Category: Uncategorized

Nothing is Free

Have you ever sent for a FREE sample of something, through the Internet or from a TV ad, only to find out (a month or more later) you actually signed up to receive merchandise on a monthly basis?

Nothing is FREE (even with shipping only cost). There is always a catch project management plan. These scam artists will tell you (once you call to find out what the heck the charges were for) that the ad indicated if you didn’t cancel within 30 days after receipt of the sample, you will have agreed to a monthly subscription. Look for the FINE print somewhere in the ad…vendors say it is there?!

If you take the bate, once you receive your first shipment and do not wish monthly shipments to continue, contact the vendor immediately and cancel the subscription (that you were unaware you had in the first place!) aipnib8. Make sure you keep a record of the date and time of your call and the name of the person you talked to. You will most likely have to pay for the first shipment (after receiving the FREE sample), because credit card companies (which are well aware of this type of SCAM), will rarely assist you in getting a credit and side with the vendor.

Follow through immediately with your credit card company (after your call to the SCAM vendor) and file a dispute…and stay on it, as the credit card company will not follow through for you! If too much time goes by (60 days), the credit card company will not do anything for you to resolve the issue.

So as good as something may sound in an ad, be very aware of the fine print before requesting samples. If there is no fine print, after you receive the samples, call the vendor anyway to check and see if you were signed up for a monthly subscription. I can assure you, you will have been! If you cancel then, you may escape from further costs!

Watch for Medicare Fraud

It is sad and cruel when health care providers take advantage of the Medicare system by filing FRAUDulent claims.

With continuing complaints that Social Security and Medicare are draining the system, provider FRAUD does not help matters.

Only days ago our family was advised about provider FRAUD by the Franciscan Hospice in Tacoma, Washington. They denied my Mother going into their hospice home in March 2016. After taking extensive financial information (that we found out was not required) on myself, my sister and my Mother, and having us sign hospice documents, the social worker/intake person denied service to my Mother (even with a doctor’s authorization to place her) and without examination. The social worker and nurse (who said/did nothing) then immediately left my Mother’s home.

Within hours of their visit I called and cancelled the contract and requested our information be returned. Within 12 hours, the nurse present at the initial meeting, came to pick-up my letter of cancellation. She did not come in, but just took receipt of the cancellation letter.

The discovery of the claims being file (and paid by Medicare) was only recently discovered when my Mom did enter hospice (elsewhere) and the new provider paperwork process began learn the facts here now. The new service provider found out about the claims filed by the Franciscan Hospice and paid by Medicare, and advised us. The new hospice provider was unaware that we were unaware about the claims filed previously…that were FRAUDulently filed. That FRAUD also caused an issue with the evaluation timeframe for my Mom. Yes, we are filing a dispute and pursuing the matter.

Watch for FRAUD. Check EOB’s (Explanation of Benefits) carefully. If you do not receive an EOB for a service, request one. If you give proprietary information to a provider and do not use that provider, make sure you get your information back and check that no claims were filed with Medicare.

Side Note: Did you know that when hospice is called in and accepts a patient that a substantial amount of money is placed in “holding” for hospice claims…as in my Mom’s example with the Franciscan Hospice, $27,000.00 was placed in hold for their use! Provider FRAUD and questionable Medicare practices are not a good combo…Be Watchful, Stop health care provider FRAUD!

Pictures and Memorabilia

A friend and business associate recently made me aware of another important piece to add to all your estate and wishes information… the pictures you want used for any services or announcements about you. My friend had to go through her pictures, due to water damage in a storage area. In doing so she had the insight to pull the pictures together SHE WANTED to be used, after her passing, so family members would not have to scramble to find them.

Just having pictures and memorabilia pulled together by family member, makes it easier later to pull them out to use when planning a celebration or significant event. They do not have to be in date order, just PULLED TOGETHER and placed in watertight containers. The water tight containers that The Container Store carries are perfect for the job.
When a long time client of mine passed away recently, the family was able to go to all the pictures and memorabilia I had pulled together for her, distributing the children/grandchildren’s precious containers to each, but also finding the pictures needed for the various services and announcements. It brought ease to a difficult time and time enjoying the contents rather than frustration trying to find what was needed.

Doing a picture/memorabilia project can be time consuming, so just start with the sort. Adding dates and placing in a particular order can be Phase 2 of the project free project planning software. Put the pictures of yourself and/or significant other(s) in an envelope and place them with your estate documents indicating those are the pictures YOU WANT used.

Letter of Wishes

In my travels the past few months, to help family and work with clients… and just to enjoy parts of our gorgeous country and Canada, I am asked continually about downsizing and getting vital estate documents in order (wills, trusts, financial and healthcare directives, etc Related Site.). I’ll reflect on downsizing at another time… for now I want to note the importance of not waiting until you are (perceived) older/old to take care of, and get in order, those most important vital estate documents.

Your estate documents are essential, but what I find not focused on are birth certificates, marriage and divorce papers and the all important “Letter of Wishes.” Your “Letter of Wishes” is a vital document attached to your estate documents that contains your burial wishes, how you want your personal effects to be distributed, a list of people to notify and all your bank, credit card, investment, insurance, property and social security information, to name a few. That information is what will help guide your executor and/or trustee to handle your wishes in the manner YOU WANT them handled.

Attaching your “Letter of Wishes” to your estate documents and making sure your executor and/or trustee are aware of it is of utmost importance.

Clutter and Neurodegenerative Disease

I pondered for quite some time over which topic I might reflect on as my first “Reflections from Sharon.” In mulling over the many topics, I decided to touch on Alzheimer’s and Dementia Disease. Many diseases affect our ability to perform day to day activities and the ability to get organized, but Alzheimer’s and Dementia, not always apparent until into more advanced stages, are diseases where the patient does benefit from being in simplified, less cluttered environments task planning tool.

Having “too much stuff” and clutter causes confusion and feelings of being overwhelmed for those suffering from Alzheimer’s or Dementia. Often one may find things thrown into the recycle or garbage bins that are not at all meant to be there!

In my experience it has become very clear that downsizing and eliminating piles of papers, magazines, mail, stuff, etc., helps to lessen overwhelming feelings and confusion for those with Alzheimer’s or Dementia. Having the individual with the disease participate in a small way is also helpful. I find that they feel they are contributing even when taking a box of “must keeps” to a closet or a bag of papers to the recycle bin.

It’s important to have the conversation with your loved one’s doctor to understand why this issue causes the individual such distress, however, that understanding is to help you not the person with the disease. “It is what it is” for them … helping them feel in some control and lessening their confusion is the point of downsizing, decluttering and simplifying. Actually, anyone in the household will find a reward in the process of easing the mind of your loved one … as well as freeing your mind of obstacles that prevent you from having a productive, less stressed day!