Workers’ compensation insurance is invaluable for workers who work in dangerous environments, suffer injuries, and need to cover their costs and medical bills while they recover.
While workers’ compensation fraud in St. Louis and Missouri is rare, it does happen. Employees may falsify injuries to get money they don’t deserve, or employers may lie about incidents in order to avoid insurance payouts. In some cases, insurance companies may even engage in fraud to try to maintain their profits.
In this article, we’ll look at a few of the penalties that may be incurred as a result of workers’ compensation fraud in Missouri – and why violating the law is such a bad idea!
Penalties For Employee Fraud
If an employee makes a claim for workers’ compensation benefits to which they know they are not entitled – or file multiple claims or the same occurrence – this is a Class E felony. As any St. Louis work injury attorney will tell you, you should absolutely never falsify or make a fraudulent claim for workers’ compensation insurance.
The typical punishment for this is a fine of up to $10,000 or twice the value of the fraud – whichever is larger. Class E felonies can also carry a prison term of up to 4 years. Violating this law again will likely result in a class D felony.
Penalties For Employer Fraud
Employers can also get in serious trouble if they are fraudulent.
If an employer knowingly misrepresents the classification of an employee’s job to save money on insurance, this is a Class A misdemeanor, and further violations may be charged as a Class E felony.
If an employer knowingly makes a false statement about a worker’s entitlement to benefits in order to discourage them from claiming benefits – or falsifies evidence or statements to deny a worker benefits to which they are entitled – this is a class A misdemeanor. Further violations will be charged as Class D felonies.
Employers may be charged up to $10,000 for initial Class A misdemeanor violations, with steeper penalties and potential jail time for further violations.
Penalties For Insurer Fraud
If an insurer knowingly and intentionally fails to meet worker’s compensation obligations to which an employee is legally entitled, they may be charged with a class E felony, with a fine of $10,000 or double the value of fraud, whichever is larger. Further violations may be charged as a class D felony.
Get Help From a St. Louis Workers’ Compensation Attorney!
If you think that your employer or insurer is attempting to lie about your injury and is making fraudulent claims, you will greatly benefit from the help of an experienced St. Louis work injury lawyer. With the help of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney in St. Louis, you can protect your legal right to compensation.
If you’ve been injured on the job in the state of Missouri, give us a call 24/7 at (314) 361-4300 for a FREE case evaluation.