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California counties receive $32 million to fight 'costly problem' of work comp fraud

Those employees who suffer serious and debilitating injuries while on the job are legally entitled to monetary assistance through their employers' workers' compensation insurance. Unfortunately, there are some employees who seek to take advantage of this equitable system, often misrepresenting the extent of their work injuries or lying about how their injuries occurred. However, it appears that state officials have recognized the gravity of the work comp fraud/employee fraud problem in the state and are now taking affirmative steps to help solve it.

Earlier this week, state officials authorized the disbursement of almost $32 million in grant money to county district attorneys throughout California for the express purpose of investigating and prosecuting workers' compensation fraud.

Here in the Los Angeles area and the San Fernando Valley, the disbursements broke down as follows:

  • Los Angeles County: $5.7 million
  • Orange County: $3.5 million
  • San Bernardino County: $2.1 million
  • Riverside County: $1.4 million
  • Ventura County: $735,000

The funding for the grant money is the direct result of annual assessments on California employers as determined by the Fraud Assessment Commission.

Counties seeking this grant money must submit applications to the California Department of Insurance, where they will be reviewed by the Workers' Compensation Grant Review Panel. Here, final decisions on grant disbursements are made based upon consideration of a variety of factors.

"Workers' compensation insurance fraud is a costly problem in California," said Commissioner Dave Jones. "As the economy struggles to recover, fraud of this type creates an additional strain on the system. We must protect those injured workers who need care and compensation so they can return to work in a timely manner and bring to justice those who seek to cheat the system."

Workers compensation fraud/employee fraud is a very serious crime. If you suspect that such a crime has been perpetrated against your organization, you should strongly consider speaking with an experienced workers' comp defense attorney.

Stay tuned for further developments in the area of workers' compensation defense law ...

This post was provided for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.

Related Resources:

State sends $32 million to counties to fight workers' comp fraud (The Central Valley Business Times)

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