Saturday, March 20, 2010

Government Agencies -

Chris needs a duplicate Social Security card. I lost his original one. He finished the classroom part of Drivers Ed in November, but needs his SS card to get his permit and do the driving part. So I sent in his birth certificate and my passport and the application only to get it back. They need another piece of identification for Chris, the letter says.

So we get a VOE (verification of enrollment) from school and send it in with the other papers only to get them back again. This time the VOE is not good enough because it does not have his birthdate on it. The letter also says something about my pasport not being accceptable as well, this time. So I decide to try to go to the office during spring break and clear the mess up.

I get to the new SS office, take a number and sit and wait for just about an hour before my number is called. While there I notice that there are 48 service windows. Only about 12 of them are staffed and there is a good sized crowd, about 40-50 people waiting in my room, another room has about that many as well.

When I get to the window, the guy asks what I need, and I tell him I want to know why our application for a duplicate card keeps getting sent back, taking out all the identifications I had for Chris in his folder at home. He informs me that a birth certificate is not an acceptable form of identification. It says you can use it on the website though. Only for an infant, he responds. Chris' passport is expired and therefore not valid for ID (I expected that, but brought it anyway). His VOE from school is not good because it does not have his birthdate on it. The baptismal certificate is good only if it was issued less than 4 years ago. Like a dummy I answered truthfully when he asked when I got it. And the immunization record from the doctor's office is no good because it is a copy and has not signature on it. So you mean all I have to do is get this signed by the doctor's office and I am good. Yes, he acknowledges.

So off I go to the pediatrician's office. I chill for an hour at the mall because the doctor's office is closed for lunch. I walk in and tell the receptionist what I need. One of the nurses comes over, signs the form, and off I go again. Back to the SS office.

Sit in the SS office once more, this time for 87 minutes. Walk up to the service window when my number is called and present the signed copy of the immunization record, the application and my passport. Clerk looks at it, says "Fine and thank you" handing me my receipt, telling me that Chris' card should be here within 2 weeks.

All I could think of was that I wasted at least 2 hours of time. I should have just walked out, signed the paper myself and walked back in! They would have never known the difference.

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