I would like to discuss a current issue that has become a more apparent and quite frustrating when representing petitioners in workers compensation claims. It seems that smaller employers with employees of 50 and less have been among the worst when trying to redirect employees from their rights to receive workers compensation benefits. On several occasions, my office has been called by owners of companies trying to deny an injured worker was an employee. This usually happens when a worker gets paid by cash. We also see employers intimidate an employees and threaten their jobs. This issue has been addressed by the state legislator.
Employer fraud in total throughout the country is much more extensive than employee fraud. The wider the net, the more the fraud. When thousands of employers across the country intentionally fail to pay required workers’ compensation premiums or misrepresent the job classification of employees who are covered, the fraud perpetrated on the system vastly exceeds the dollar amount of employee fraud.
The law of unintended consequences may be catching up with insurance companies, employers, All states are encouraged to adopt an aggressive policy toward uninsured employers and others who try to cheat.
Effective systems need to be in place to guarantee that required policies are purchased, that annual audits of employers are conducted, and that fraud investigators are authorized to shut down construction sites and other places of employment when the employer has not purchased insurance.