Smiling on Facebook costs Canadian her insurance


A picture is worth a thousand words, and in the case of Nathalie Blanchard of Quebec, Canada, it can also be worth thousands of dollars in lost benefits. The 29-year-old IBM employee, diagnosed with severe depression, spent more than a year and a half away from her job, during which she received paid sick leave from Manulife, IBM’s insurance company. At the suggestion of her doctor, Blanchard went on short vacations to try to improve her mental state while still out from work. These trips seemed to do the trick, for Blanchard was shown having a good time in the photos she posted on her Facebook page, including ones at Chippendale’s and on the beach. In October she noticed that her sick-leave payments stopped coming. That’s because, she alleges, her agent at Manulife saw the images and concluded that Blanchard was no longer depressed.
Manulife declined to comment on the incident but said in a statement that "we would not deny or terminate a valid claim solely based on information published on websites such as Facebook."

But the company did recognize that it uses such information to learn more about their clients.

A technology expert says that's the lesson people should learn from the case of a Canadian woman who says her Facebook postings led to her disability benefits being cancelled.

 

  1. Blogger Carolyn said,

    10:13 AM

    I heard about this not too long ago.. and All I have to say is that people need to learn to make Their facebook pages entirely private.. I do feel bad for the woman though..

  2. Anonymous lofa said,

    6:56 PM

    I've read several news articles and researched for additional details before coming to a conclusion.

    I'm sorry to say this, but it sounds like to me that this woman is just lazy. Anyone who really had a depression [or other mental] problem would NOT be posting photos on facebook, much less continuing to post photos on facebook. This whole "I have a depression problem" is just one that ANYONE can fake.

    Now as for the argument of how facebook profiles should have been locked and private... there is NO such thing as keeping things "safe" and locked on the net. ANYTHING that gets posted or sent [yes that includes EMAIL] through the net STAYS on the net. I've known this simple FACT for years.

    As for the insurance company being "in the wrong" to snoop and discontinue her benefits... I'm sorry, but they have every right to know if someone is handing them a line a sh!t just to get free money out of the deal. There ARE people out there who REALLY do need and deserve to have health insurance, but don't get it because of individuals like this woman who make it bad for everyone else. I commend the insurance company for buckling down and I wish that other leeching individuals would get caught and cut off too.

    Bottom line: it doesn't pay to be a thief, liar, lazy, money moocher. Let this be a lesson for anyone who thinks it's ok to suck on the system while others pay their hard earned money for it. IBM would be wise to not allow the woman to come back to the job. Instead, they should tell her to take a hike, as this story I'm sure will have some sort of bad reflection on the corporation. If this woman is capable of going to a beach weekly and capable of going to night clubs to see male dancers, then she's most certainly capable of working a normal job like a normal human being.

    Don't feel sorry for con artists. They're good at sucking people dry of their money.

  3. Anonymous Anonymous said,

    8:53 PM

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