Postal Worker Lied on Her Workers’ Compensation Forms Collecting Over $150,000
Pennsauken, NJ (Law Firm Newswire) December 08, 2022 – Federal authorities conducted an undercover investigation of a 38-year-old postal worker who collected over $150,000 in workers’ compensation benefits. The woman filed a claim for an on-the-job accident. She said that she sprained her right knee while performing her duties as a mail carrier.
The probe into the postal worker’s disability statements and income showed that the woman started a business after filing for worker’s compensation. She received her business license from the Jersey City Department of Health and Human Services. Additional proof of her business included advertising her food truck on social media, an undercover officer placing orders and the woman giving the officer an invoice.
The United States Attorney’s office filed court documents alleging that the woman lied on her workers’ compensation forms. The allegations include statements in her disability paperwork that she did not earn any income outside of injury benefits. However, as the investigators found, she operated a food truck, which gave her a substantial income. If found guilty, she may get a sentence of up to five years in prison.
United States Postal Service workers are federal civilian employees. When a postal worker suffers a job-related injury or disease, they may receive compensation under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA) Program. If the employee dies from such injury or illness, the eligible survivors of the deceased receive benefits. The FECA is the sole remedy for federal civilian employees to recover benefits; therefore, they cannot sue the employee or the United States for compensation.
The FECA Program provides monetary and medical benefits including, wage compensation, disability benefits and medical care. The Program expects a federal civilian employee that partially or entirely recovers from his or her injury to return to work. Claimants must provide accurate information in connection to their workers’ compensation application. They must not knowingly give false or fraudulent statements regarding their health status and outside income sources. Reporting a change in recovery or earnings is essential because it can result in an adjustment in benefits.
A claimant who makes fraudulent and false statements or representations about compensation, payment, benefits and health status commits perjury, which is a criminal offense. The punishment is a fine and up to five years imprisonment. However, if the falsely received benefits are $1000 or less, the employee faces a criminal penalty of up to one year in prison, a fine, or both.
Learn more at http://www.petrilloandgoldberg.com/
Petrillo & Goldberg Law
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