A Blog Mainly About Food

If by "mainly" you mean "sometimes"

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Just When You Think You're Out

Here I thought my trials with my former employer were over, what with the quitting and moving on thing. How wrong I was.

Before I go on, it should be said that for the first 2.5 years there, I really didn't know I was being mistreated. It was my first job and I basically didn't have any framework for comparison. But it became abundantly clear at some point that the company I worked for was fiscally irresponsible, ethically dubious, and offered no chances for me to advance. Of course, getting a new job took me the better part of a year and a half, but it happened, and I left work semi-amicably.

Since departing, I've been kept in the loop about my old office's money problems -- problems that I personally am convinced will lead to the company going out of business at some point, or at the very least radically restructuring and letting significant numbers of employees go. Since the bulk of my 401K savings were being matched by them, I thought "hmm... time to get on the ball and roll that money over to my TSP account. So I filled out the paperwork, and in process decided to cash out a portion to get me some needed liquid funds (don't ask, just trust me, the need outweighs the tax penalty).

And here I am, five business days since I faxed my forms to the old office. I check with the old HR department and they say yes, they did get my fax, fill it out, and then fax it to the 401K folks. So I call the account folks to find out when I'm going to get my not-insignificant check. They say to me (rather annoyingly cheerily, I might add) "Oh, we're not seeing anything in process for your account. We would have processed any paperwork in 24 hours."

My 401k is administered by a big, well-known organization. And the trustworthiness of my old office has always been... shall we say... dubious. So, my emotional conclusion: the old office is lying to me. I call them on it and, hey, whaddya know, they did actually forget about it. They'll fax the forms over right away.

I should not criticize them for lying, saying they did something when they didn't. Back at the old job, I did that all the time. Heck, we were practically trained to do that sort of thing. But this is my money. (yes, shoe on other foot, I know).

And my anger toward how mistreated I was at the old job, which had subsided and/or changed into a dull sort of nostalgia, is like a phoenix reborn. What a bunch of jerks.