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You’ve Been Falsely Accused of Workers’ Compensation Fraud. What Do You Do?

criminal defenseWorkers’ compensation is a form of no-fault insurance, specifically provided to make sure that employees do not suffer financially if they are hurt on the job. It provides a lifeline for people like our clients who want nothing more than to get better and go back to work.

Unfortunately, there are some who try to game the system. They make false claims that a work-related disability is keeping them from returning to work and collect workers’ compensation benefits to which they are not entitled. In the state of New Jersey, when a worker makes this type of false representation, it is a crime. If you’ve been falsely accused of workers’ compensation fraud, you need the help of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.

When perpetrated by an employee, workers’ compensation fraud can take a variety of forms. They are:

  • Misrepresenting job status while collecting temporary disability benefits
  • Filing a claim for an injury that either did not happen or did not happen while on the job.
  • Misrepresenting the level of injury or disability in order to get benefits
  • Misrepresenting a history of a previous illness or injury, or treatment for a previous illness or injury.

Committing this type of fraud carries serious repercussions. Recently a Postal Service employee from Cape May County was charged with stealing over $75,000 worth of federal workers’ compensation benefits after photos he posted of himself on Facebook revealed that he was zip lining and rappelling while collecting disability benefits for a purposed wrist injury. He was charged with second-degree theft by deception and third-degree insurance fraud: those crimes carry prison times of five to 10 years in state prison and three to five years respectively. They also carry fines of $150,000 and $15,000 respectively.

In the state of New Jersey, making a false claim for workers’ compensation benefits is a fourth-degree crime. Those who are found guilty are required to repay the benefits that they receive, as well as jail time of up to 18 months and fines of up to $10,000.

Facing this type of charge should be taken extremely seriously. To speak with an experienced attorney who can defend you against workers’ compensation fraud charges, call us today.