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Trust, but verify

1 min read


SmartPulse — our weekly reader poll in Smartbrief on Workforce — tracks feedback from leading managers and HR practitioners. We run the poll question each Wednesday in our e-newsletter.

Last week, we asked: Do you verify dependent relationships for health care?

  • No — it’s the honor system for us, 46%
  • Yes — in all cases, 40%
  • Just birth or marriage certificates, 8%
  • Just for children attending college, 6%

I talked to several people about the result from this week’s poll and it was funny how split people were on it. Some people couldn’t believe that most didn’t check, and some were appalled that they would be forced to dig up a birth or marriage certificate. Not checking in most cases is still the norm and most of the time, that’s just fine. There will be a few abusers but it is easy enough to figure out the most egregious violators.

Lance Haun is community director for, the main guy over at and a member of the SmartBrief on Workforce Advisory Board.