As a senior systems administrator for a financial institution, Unum customer Lori Meyers performed highly technical tasks and worked overtime to ensure her company’s servers and software were running smoothly.
It was a job she loved, and she was good at it. As a senior manager, Lori had access to voluntary Individual Disability Insurance coverage – a supplement to the Short Term Disability and Long Term Disability benefits provided by her employer.
“It was important to me to take responsibility for my financial future, since my company was paying for my disability benefits,” Lori said. “I was making a decent living, and Individual Disability coverage was affordable. I wanted to get all the insurance I could to protect myself from the unexpected.”
According to Lori, the “unexpected” event she imagined was being involved in a car accident, or something similar. She never dreamed her immune system would change her life forever.
“I started noticing numbness in my extremities and was having difficulty walking,” she said. “My doctor scheduled an MRI and the results showed I had multiple sclerosis. Over the next two-week period, I felt awful and couldn’t get out of bed.”
Pamela Fox, a lead disability benefits specialist at Unum, was assigned to Lori’s claim. She provided her with a detailed outline of her Individual Disability benefits while she remained on Unum’s Short Term Disability claim.
“Once she exhausted her Short Term Disability benefits, her Long Term Disability claim was assigned to me to handle concurrently with her Individual Disability claim,” Pamela explained. “I provided her with a detailed outline of her benefits. I encouraged her to focus on getting better and let me worry about gathering the documentation from her physicians and employer to further evaluate her claims.”
Lori appreciated Pamela’s empathy, desire to help and, most of all, patience.
“My memory isn’t good right now, and I wasn’t aware that I was forgetting things right away,” Lori said. “Everyone was so patient with me and really helped me understand everything. But Pam stood out. She was so considerate and wanted to know how I was feeling. She treated me so well.”
Lori doesn’t know when she will be able to go back to work, so her monthly benefits help her pay bills, buy groceries and support her kids, who are still in school.
“These benefits have been the difference between keeping my home and losing it and everything else I’ve worked to attain,” Lori said. “Even if you have these benefits and never use them, the knowledge that you have this financial security is worth the cost.”
Pamela helps hundreds of customers each year and tries to build a good rapport with each one. She says her personal goal is to show empathy, to find a way to relate to each person’s situation and to make each person feel comfortable throughout the claim process.
“Claims like Lori’s really make you feel like you’ve been able to make a positive impact on someone else’s life,” Pamela said.