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California woman guilty: fraudulent workers' compensation claims

A California woman who was employed at a local sheriff's office has been sentenced to a year in jail and three years of probation. She has been found guilty of having made fraudulent workers' compensation claims in connection with an injury she reported receiving on the job. Her husband has also been found to have played a role in the deception.

The matter was investigated by a California Insurance department when the woman was alleged to have been seen taking part in activities that she had claimed she was unable to engage in. The woman had reported to her employers that she had received an ankle injury when a mail cart was run into her at work. She is reported to have received over $28,000 in disability payments.

The woman had collected several thousand dollars in disability pay while she was off work for an extended period of time. She was observed using a wheelchair and other forms of assistance when she would attend doctor's appointments. Her husband had knowledge of her attempt to collect fraudulent payments and he was found guilty of not informing proper authorities. The woman has already made restitution payments in connection with this case.

While many California workers are injured at work and collect the payments to which they are entitled to by law, there are situations that arise whereby workers try to take advantage of the program. Fraudulent workers' compensation claims are a problem for everyone. When workers try to obtain payments that they are not legally entitled to, it can lead to all claims being delayed. In addition, the higher costs to employers may lead to the need to cut the work force in order to bring costs under control.

Source: vcstar.com, Santa Paula woman sentenced after pleading guilty to worker's comp fraud, No author, Sept. 17, 2013

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