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Man who filed injured worker claim caught defrauding the system

Employers are obligated to purchase insurance that provides compensation benefits to injured workers. When someone is hurt on the job and files an injured worker claim, the benefits received can help cover the cost of medical bills and also replace lost wages. However, when someone in California defrauds the system, it can have a negative affect on both other workers and employers alike.

A man in another state recently pleaded guilty to just such an offense. He had reportedly been collecting benefits from a state agency. A tip was received, which prompted the agency to enlist the assistance of the Special Investigations Department. An investigation led officials to believe that the man was secretly working at another job while continuing to collect compensation benefits.

At that point in time, the man had allegedly already collected at least $5,000 in benefits for a supposed injury he had suffered on the agency job. Since then, the 57-year-old man has pleaded guilty to workers' compensation fraud. The judge suspended a 180-day jail term. Instead, the man will serve one year on probation. He must also pay back all benefits he collected to which he was not entitled.

Another report stated that the man has already paid more than $2,000 of the court-ordered restitution. There have been similar situations in California where employers have suspected workers of fraud. If an injured worker claim is believed to be fraudulent, an employer can take immediate action by asking an experienced workers' comp attorney to investigate the situation. From there, the attorney can help determine whether evidence of fraud exists, and what may be the best way to address the matter in court.

Source: watchdog.org, "Pesky Fraudsters", Larry Benson, Aug. 30, 2016

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