From HR:

She just needs to understand that if we provide the carrier her spouse’s name and then something were to turn up later down the road and she falsified her application, then that is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.

To HR:

With regards to Denise’s response: _Anyone_ who falsifies an insurance claim is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination. Whether my last name is the same as my spouse’s is entirely irrelevant to that fact.

I don’t think Denise is understanding the basis of my complaint. I understand that they are concerned with insurance fraud. I don’t object to having to provide proof of marriage. I understand that they are providing me with a service and that in good faith I should be willing to provide them with proof that I’m not trying to defraud them. That isn’t inherently an objectionable situation.

What I do object to is having to provide proof of marriage _because my last name is different from my spouse’s_. It is my understanding that married couples who share the same last name are not requested to provide proof of marriage.

This is a discriminatory policy, and that is what I object to. The implication is that a married couple with the same last name is inherently more trustworthy than a married couple with different last names.

I’m genuinely not trying to be difficult on this issue. It’s merely that I feel very strongly about it, and I believe that it’s a policy that should be reconsidered. I’m sure that APCS doesn’t intend discrimination, and there is a comparatively simple solution; all that needs to be done is require proof of marriage from anyone claiming to be married.

If this doesn’t work, next time I’ll use even *smaller* words. Grr.


Ahahah. I have just deleted over 150 messages from my work inbox. That is very satisfying. DELETE DELETE DELETE!

My poor QA guy keeps saying, “shit!” about things today. Vincent *very* rarely swears. He must be having a hell of a day. We’ve got quarterly releases to…night? Or tomorrow night. But yeah. Poor Vincent.

Email from HR this morning:

You can let her know that we ask this of all employees who are adding dependents with different last names whether it be children or spouse’s. Because our policies do not allow anything but a spouse, we are permitted to request information. If we don’t do it, then the carrier will to make sure they aren’t insuring an ineligible dependent. So therefore, we do it so the employee doesn’t have to work directly with the carrier.

My response:

I understand why they’re making the request they’re making. I understand that in order to put Ted on my policy I will have to produce some sort of documentation proving that I’m married to him. I don’t happen to have a copy of my marriage certificate available; like I said, I do have some nice wedding photos. What precisely are we considering ‘proof’, here?

My objection is that I believe this to be discriminatory. From what I’m reading here, I’m understanding that if, hypothetically, I were to add my brother to my insurance and list him as my spouse, that unless and until I filed a claim in his name, it would be assumed that I was telling the truth, and that he was my spouse, because he has the same last name as I do. My understanding is that because my husband has a different last name than I do, I am assumed to be telling a falsehood, and therefore must prove that I am indeed married to him.

I don’t believe the fact that this is being requested of other people whose children or spouses who have different last names makes it right. It is merely discriminatory. Non-discriminatory procedure would be requiring proof of marriage from all employees who claim to be married.

I’m not at all sure the hypothetical brother situation is going to do anything but confuse and annoy them, but by *God* I can’t let this lie. I seriously feel I’m being discriminated against. I *get* that I’m going to have to provide the documentation, but I’m going to do everything I bloody well can to get the policy changed. It’s *wrong*.

Hissing, spitting Kit. *Really* pissed off.

This afternoon I got an email from my HR department which read:

Catherine has a different last name than her spouse – Ted Lee. Can you obtain something confirming that they are married before we add him as the dependent in the system?

Hello? What century is this? What world are we living in? Since when is the *same last name* an absolute for a married couple? I wrote back, asked if married couples with the same last name had to submit proof of marriage, and while I was at it, asked a couple of my married coworkers if they’d been asked to prove they were married. HR wrote back and said no, married couples with the same last name did not have to submit proof of marriage, and the coworkers had not been asked.

So while I was trying to rein in my temper enough to email HR back and tell them I did not have a fax machine, but I could email them some nice pictures of my wedding if they wanted, my boss, who was one of the married couples I asked, went and talked to HR and told them that I wasn’t very happy, and I then got this:

[I have sent the higher-up HR person] an email about the request she made. She will get back to me tomorrow and I will pass her email onto you. I am sure this is just standard procedure for them.

To which I responded:

I imagine it probably is standard procedure, but I feel quite strongly that it’s a discriminatory procedure.

Sharing or not sharing the same last name is hardly a signifier of marriage in today’s world. I feel that if I, as a married woman who retained her maiden name, am expected to prove that I am married to a man with a different last name, that it is only reasonable that married couples who have the same last names should also be expected to submit proof of marriage. If married couples who share the same last name are trusted to be telling the truth, I see no reason why married couples who do not share the same last name should not be trusted in the same way.

And there we stand. Tomorrow there will be more news. *Wow* I’m pissy about this.