Wednesday, January 9 2013, 10:53 PM MST
Government Loses Ogden Woman's Name
Reported by Matt Gephardt
Produced by Cindy St Clair
(KUTV) After Katina Louise Bergstrom got divorced she wanted to make a simple name change dropping her last name and making her middle name her new, last name. Katina says she took her divorce decree to the Social Security Administration office in Ogden, Utah to make the change.
“I got my [Social Security] card in the mail and my name was Katina Louise, so all was good,” she said.
But it was not all good when her Medicare card showed up in the mail. Katina no longer has a first name. The card reads “Unknown Katina Louise.” Katina says it took two months of calls to the Social Security Administration to find out what happened.
“The clerk had not typed in my first name,” she said. “She had typed in both names in the last name field.”
That clerical error was causing big problems for Unknown Katina Louise.
“All of my medical claims have been denied because the names don't match up,” she said.
And worse, Katina says the Social Security Administration wouldn't simply fix the problem. She decided to Get Gephardt.
“What do you do?” she asked. “I don't have a name.”
Get Gephardt called the regional Social Security Office in Denver to find out what happened. A spokesperson declined to comment citing privacy concerns but he promised to look into the matter.
Roughly two weeks later, the problem is finally fixed. Katina has now been issued a new Medicare card with her corrected name, Katina Louise.
One cannot legally change their name on a whim. There are certain documents required like a divorce decree or marriage certificate. Short of that, legally a court order is required.
(Copyright 2013 Sinclair Broadcasting Group)