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October 2013 Archives

OSHA investigation results in heavy fines

A construction company has been deemed responsible by a federal safety agency after a worker died on the job. After the incident, an OSHA investigation has resulted in the company having to pay thousands of dollars in fines for the alleged violations. While this construction company is not located in California, this agency investigates workplace accidents in every state.

$32M in grants to fight California employee fraud for comp claims

Workers' compensation is an exceedingly valuable government-sponsored insurance, which helps both employers and employees ensure that injured workers are well taken care of. However, just like any kind of insurance, the system is also a breeding ground for fraud. Fraudulent workers' compensation employee fraud claims are common, and for that reason, employers and the California Insurance Commissioner must be on the lookout for the telltale signs of fraud to prevent it and put a stop to it wherever possible.

Plea in a fraudulent workers' compensation claims case

Producing fraudulent workers' compensation claims means falsifying information, including medical costs and other expenses. Dishonest claims become fraudulent when they are provided to an employer, or provided by the employer to the city or insurance company. When a former CEO made her plea in a fraudulent workers' compensation claims case recently, the California woman was ordered to provide additional restitution.

Employee fraud can be detected through video surveillance

Some employees collecting workers' compensation benefits don't realize that their movements and daily activities may be the subject of random surveillance by insurance carriers. One man who was recently arrested was either unaware of that fact or he felt that after years of collecting benefits there was no continuing risk of surveillance. Both in California and throughout the country it's a common tool of insurers to weed out cases of employee fraud by randomly observing and videotaping recipients in their daily activities.

Officer's fraudulent workers' compensation claims

California police officers are constantly watched and looked to for guidance, honesty and integrity by the people they live and work around. An officer, or any company employee, who is dishonest can risk the safety and trust of the community and department. A ruling in a police officer's fraudulent workers' compensation claims recently confronted that dishonesty.

Bill signed could aid employees injured from an OSHA violation

When a workplace injury is caused by an employer's inability to provide a safe working environment and is accused of an OSHA violation or negligence, the victim may feel anxiety and confusion on how to pursue a claim. Previously, an injured worker in need of physical therapy was typically required to first receive an exam by a doctor prior to seeking treatment. A recent California bill has passed that could aid employees injured from an OSHA violation or workplace accident by changing this.

New law gives employer defense to out-of-state athletes

For many years thousands of athletes from around the country have been allowed to file workers' compensation claims in California and collect for what is called cumulative trauma. That is a category of injury that occurs over time and may include arthritis or the accumulated brain injuries that built up over a career of successive head concussions. Due to loopholes in the relatively lenient California workers' compensation law, there was no effective employer defense to the procedural correctness of these filings.

California county fined for asbestos OSHA violation

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration exposure to asbestos can cause delayed disease or damage to organs and lungs of a person who breathes it in. This has the potential to lead to permanent disabilities, cancer or even death, which could instigated an OSHA violation when employees are not protected adequately. Because of this toxic risk, regulations and classifications have been put in place to protect workers from exposure and injury. Recently, a California county fined for asbestos OSHA violation is accused of a less than suitable response to possible exposure to a highly toxic compound by many employees.

Lifeguard workers' compensation defense fueled legislation

Many California lifeguards stationed along the stretching coast are authorized to write tickets and make arrests just as California police officers, though their benefit structures vary dramatically. Previously, when an on-water emergency worker suffered injuries on the job, they faced a workers' compensation defense that provided little to no benefits for disability leave and medical costs. A serious of lifeguard workers' compensation defense fueled legislation change recently, permitting a true benefit structure to cover financial needs.

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