Social Media Gets Bartender Arrested For Workers’ Compensation Fraud
Most people use Facebook, Twitter or some other social media program to connect with others. Many people, however, do not use these apps appropriately. Some tend to overshare on them, and, in some cases, doing so may be illegal.
When a person applies for government benefits, such as unemployment, disability or workers’ compensation, they face scrutiny from agencies trying to refute their cases. There is so much fraud happening that these agencies are constantly on high alert. One piece of evidence that investigators for these agencies use is social media posts.
If you post photos of you working while receiving workers’ compensation benefits, or post about your recent vacation while receiving disability payments, you could be accused of fraud. This was what recently happened to a bartender.
The 26-year-old woman pled guilty to workers’ compensation fraud on May 22. The evidence? A Facebook post that investigators examining her work injury claim stumbled upon. They saw that the woman was bartending while receiving workers’ compensation benefits from a prior injury.
Investigators found that the woman had worked three different jobs while receiving the benefits. She has been charged with a first degree misdemeanor in her home state of Ohio. As part of her punishment, she must serve two years of probation as well as pay back the $7,595 in benefits that she obtained illegally.
The woman suffered her injury while working at a restaurant in 2012. Between July 2015 to February 2016, investigators found that the woman had worked at several locations while receiving temporary total disability benefits.
Using Social Media to Detect Fraud
While many people consider social media to be a waste of time, this isn’t the case for investigators who use it to look for signs of fraud. While almost all companies use social media to market products and boost revenue, social media can be used in other ways as well. In fact, 36 percent of insurance companies use social media as an investigation tool. As many as 88 percent of companies are using anti-fraud techniques to help catch those attempting to defraud the system.
Social network analysis helps uncover fraud rings and spot similarities that claims may have in common. For example, an investigator might uncover that several claimants are seeing the same physician or have injuries that are a lot alike. By employing these tactics, insurance companies can detect fraud before writing a check, saving millions of dollars.
Contact Us for More Information About Workers’ Compensation Benefits
If you are seeking workers’ compensation benefits or are looking to keep the benefits you have, it’s important not to overshare. Staying off social media is your best bet to avoid having your benefits taken away and getting in trouble with the law.
If you are facing issues with your workers’ compensation benefits, it’s crucial that you seek legal help. The Law Office of Michael Lawrence Varon in White Plains can help you obtain the benefits you deserve. For a case evaluation, call our office today at (914) 294-2145.