Solving pesky pension issues

Solving pesky pension issues

Tell Claudienne

with Claudienne Edwards

Sunday, February 16, 2020

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Dear Claudienne

I live in the United States and am in receipt of a government pension and I receive my monthly cheques from the Accountant General's Department(AGD).

I am now 77 years old and worked with the Jamaican Government in excess of 34 years.

At the date of this e-mail, January 28, 2020, my pension cheques for the months of September and October 2019 have not been lodged to my chequing account at the Bank of Nova Scotia, Port Maria Branch, St Mary.

At the end of September 2019, the AGD informed me that my monthly pension payment was suspended because I did not send an updated Pension Life Certificate to the AGD for the second quarter —April to June 2019.

It appears that the Pension Life Certificate that I had completed and mailed to the Accountant General's Department got lost in the mail.

I subsequently resubmitted another Pension Life Certificate which covered the period ending December 31, 2019.

I spoke with a clerk at the AGD during the first week of October 2019 at which time I had still not received the pension payments for September and October 2019. During the conversation, a promise was made to pay me the outstanding sum with the November payment. However, I did not receive the outstanding payments with my November pension.

Naturally, I called your office twice in early December 2019 to try to ensure that I would receive the outstanding payments with my December 2019 pension payment.

When I still did not receive the outstanding sum with my December pension cheque, I once again called the AGD office. I was told that sufficient funding was not received from the Ministry of Finance to accommodate the payment. However, they promised to pay me in January and when my January 2020 pension cheque did not include the outstanding amount and I called the AGD , they promised to send it to me in February.

I need to get this money as my monthly pension payment pays my bills.One, my landlord here in the US has threatened to evict me for three months unpaid rent and a section of the roof of my house in Jamaica, needs to be repaired.

I would appreciate your help as I had promised to pay my creditors by the end of January and am now wondering when the words “next month” will disappear from the lips of the persons I have spoken to at the ADG.

RG

Dear RG

Tell Claudienne has been in communication with the AGD and on Monday, February 10, 2020, the column received the following e-mail from the customer relations manager, communications & customer relations unit at the AGD:

“Please accept and convey our sincere apologies for the inconvenience our pensioner had experienced in respect to non-payment of pension for the period September-October 2019.

At the Accountant General's Department, we take pride in ensuring our pensioners' satisfaction. Immediately after receiving the complaint, the account of the pensioner was reviewed. It was observed that the pension was suspended on the basis of the non-receipt of the life certificate that was due on or before July 31, 2019. Also, another life certificate issued in August 2019 was not returned promptly; hence, the suspension. Nonetheless, we are in receipt of a life certificate for the quarter ending December 31, 2019. The life certificate due by January 31, 2020 is still outstanding for the pensioner in question.

We value our pensioner and are committed to providing the highest level of service simply because our pensioners deserve the very best. Therefore, we assure you that the arrears in question will be credited to the account within two (2) weeks hereof.”

The AGD said that it appears that you are mailing the life certificates late.

To avoid the AGD having to make outstanding back payments to your account, please pay keen attention to the date on the life certificate.You should try to complete the form as quickly as possible and immediately mail it back to the AGD.

We wish you all the best.

EXPERIENCING FLOW CHALLENGES

Dear Claudienne

I am reaching out to you on behalf of my mother who lives in De La Vega City, Spanish Town, and has been experiencing some challenges regarding her Flow Internet and phone services.

I have seen where you have helped numerous individuals in the pass and that's the reason why I am reaching out to you.

My mother's services were interrupted in the middle of May 2019, and their Customer Service department has been contacted several times in an attempt to get back the service. The attempts have, however, proven to be futile. The last attempt was on Tuesday, December 31, 2019 but to no avail.

Your assistance will be greatly appreciated.

LS

Dear LS

On January 6, 2020, Tell Claudienne made Flow aware of your concerns and note that they have been resolved.

You have sent the column an e-mail that reads as follows:

“I had contacted you in the first week of January this year, regarding the non-service of Internet and phone to my mother's residence.

I am pleased to report to you that with your tireless intervention, my mother's Internet and phone services have been returned to her residence. Not only that the services have been reconnected, but she also got back the same phone number, thank God.

It seems like in Jamaica if one is not rich or famous, scant or at times, no regard is given to the common people regarding services.

I am so happy to have found your section in The Sunday Observer that fateful Sunday and acted upon it the next day by reaching out to the column. You are a strong voice for those of us whose voices have been disregarded and for that I must say THANK YOU and pray that you will be sustained in carrying out your wonderful work.

We wish you all the best.”

Have a problem with a store, utility, a company? Telephone 876- 936-9436 or cel 876-484-1349 or write to: Tell Claudienne c/o Sunday Finance, Jamaica Observer, 40-42 1/2 Beechwood Avenue, Kingston 5; or e-mail: edwardsc@jamaicaobserver.com. Please include a contact phone number.


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