Workers’ compensation benefits are intended to provide injured workers with financial support as they focus on recovering from on-the-job injuries. Despite the fact that this system has limited resources and that many people who apply for these benefits have a real need for them, there are some people who may try to take advantage of the system and collect these benefits when they aren’t really injured.
Here and in an upcoming second part of this blog, we’ll take an in-depth look at five important facts that workers should know when it comes to workers’ compensation and fraud related to these benefits.
- Lying about a workplace injury to get benefits is considered to be fraud – The Colorado Workers’ Compensation Act (§8-43-402 C.R.S. and §18-1-105 C.R.S.) specifically states that making erroneous statements or misrepresentations to the Division of Workers’ Compensation in Colorado in an effort to try to obtain benefits is considered to be an act of fraud. Therefore, if a worker tries to lie about having injuries, lie about having sustained injuries on the job and/or exaggerate the severity of his injuries, this can be considered to be an act of fraud, and it can have serious consequences if the fraudulent act is discovered.
- Workers’ compensation fraud is a felony crime – Lying about workplace injuries to try to collect benefits is generally classified as a Class 5 felony offense in Colorado. If people accused of workers’ compensation fraud are ultimately convicted of these charges, they can be sentenced to up to 3 years in prison and as much as $100,000 in fines. Generally, people who receive the harshest punishments are individuals who have defrauded the government of larger sums of money and/or who have a history of fraud (or similar criminal behavior).
Don’t miss the upcoming second installment of this blog for some additional important information regarding workers’ compensation fraud.
Denver Workers’ Compensation Attorneys at the Law Office of Steven J. Picardi
Workers who suffer a personal injury on the job desire competent medical treatment and compensation to cover their lost wages as a result of their injuries. Because workers’ compensation requirements can be rigorous and confusing for both workers and for self-insured corporations, it is important to obtain legal counsel to help navigate the obstacles.
With more than 30 years of combined workers’ compensation experience, the Denver workers’ compensation attorneys at the Law Office of Steven J. Picardi have extensive knowledge of Colorado workers’ compensation law, strong credentials and a significant record of success that consistently allowed them to effectively defend employers and represent injured employees in all phases of workers’ compensation litigation. Our firm’s lawyers remain abreast of the latest changes in workers’ compensation laws and are ready to use their skills and knowledge to your advantage.
Let’s Talk about Your Rights
For experienced legal advocacy in defending or filing a workers’ compensation claim, contact the Picardi Law Firm for a consultation by calling (303) 778-8881 or by emailing us using the form at the top of the screen.