Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Just let me bitch a little bit...

Okay, I've mentioned before that I'm supposed to get paid maternity leave. This has been a real uphill battle and I'm still not sure of winning, because the secu seems to be looking for every possible reason not to pay. I meet all the criteria, but today I got a letter of refusal and no one can tell me why. This is the 8th time I've been to the freaking office and I just need to blow off some steam. It's not good to be stressed but I am one pissed-off pregnant lady and I finally lost my cool after trying to be smiley and patient and asking nicely for help.

Now, I've been back and forth to the local secu and haven't met with the same person twice. Every time I ask a question, I get a different answer. Finally, I contacted the secretary at work to check what was happening and it turns out the secu couldn't even find my file, but apparently they had decided I wasn't eligible but didn't seem on planning on letting me know. So, I went myself to their own website, downloaded the rules that stated I was in fact eligible, highlighted those parts, made copies of the proof, went back for the 7th time and argued my case. The lady there was nice but had to check with her superior, came back after 15 minutes and said everything was A-OK and I would be getting my back pay soon.

Today I got a letter saying I have been refused but no specifics saying why, other than restating the criteria that I have already proven I have met, and if I want to contest this decision I have 2 months to send a letter to the departmental agency blah blah blah. I took the letter along with the copies of everything I'd just given them, went back and said the "I have a small problem; could you please help me?" formula but ended up with a different woman who was looking for every excuse for me not to be eligible. It freaking says on the letter that in order to be eligible, I need to fall under case a or b or c and I clearly fall under case b. That didn't prevent the woman from telling me it was case a and b and c, even though it was clearly typed out in a letter coming from her superior.

I was seriously considering stomping back to the apartment to get out my Le Robert dictionary and going over the fine distinction between et/and & ou/or with her. I know I'm not a native French speaker, but I'm not that big of a moron to miss the difference between the two. She was telling me "Mais NON" and I finally got quite upset and said "MAIS SI!!!!!!!" (Oh, YES IT IS!) until she got pissed off enough at me to stomp back herself to debate the finer points of and versus or with a coworker. While she was gone, I looked down and noticed I had red blotches all over my chest...not a good I tried my yoga breathing to keep from freaking out anymore.

She came back and reluctantly admitted I was right -- but only after I asked. She said she was going to resubmit my file and when I asked her what the problem was, she said "If I knew, I would tell you." Now, don't you find this hilarious given she had just spent 10 minutes arguing with me even though she didn't know what she was talking about? I do. It's pretty damn funny. She said maybe it was because the copies I provided were of such poor quality, but get this-- she had to make copies of the copies of the copies of the originals that I've already submitted. I may need to take a lesson from this, because I've been giving them the first copy and keeping the copy of the copy (of the original that they lost). Um, no wonder the quality is poor, plus they already have this very same information in 2 different files that are currently misplaced somewhere in their office. Perhaps this is part of the problem, I don't know.

So. I'm waiting on them to call me back. I'm fed up. I know the next step will be for them to refuse to see me and make me do all my arguing at the prefectual level, which will piss me off even more. Damn damn damn.

The great thing is that at the end of this discussion, even though I'm sure we both secretly would like to smack each other upside the head with a rolled-up phone book, we said, "Au revoir, madame" as if we were best friends. Now that is politesse, my friends.


Samantha said...

oh wow, that was making MY blood pressure go up just by reading that. and bitch away, you certainly earned it!

Anonymous said...

OH, my I'm not sure I could handle that in a nice way, but you sure stood your ground and you make me proud.
I do hope that this time around it works and the money starts coming.
Have a great week and take good deep breaths

PutYourFlareOn said...

HOly crap! That made my heart race! I'm in the midst of almost the same battle as you are... and I'm going to deliver in a week just like you. I think I would have gone into labor...

Keep us posted on how it goes. Hopefully it's take care of now...

the fabulous adventures of sarah said...

well you certainly out classed her my dear.

what a C U Next Tuesday!

my favourite part is that A. you are smarter than she is B. you are RIGHT and C. you're NICER!

i hope things go better soon!!
my fingers are crossed for you.
way to go on showing grace under fire!
love you!