September Fraud Roundup

The owner of a contracting company in Happauge faces up to four years in prison for cheating his workers’ compensation insurer. The owner of “Colt Contracting” allegedly concealed the payroll of eight of his employees in order to perpetrate the fraud. The fraud was discovered on September 9th by the New York Insurance Bureau, the New York Insurance Fund, and the office of the Inspector General of the Workers’ Compensation Fund.

A second contractor in Long Island (Stephen Schiavoni) was arrested by local police for allegedly hiding 900,000 in contracting sales to defraud his workers’ comp insurer of $44,000 in premiums in a one year period (Story from Sept 18, 2009).

A New York police officer lost his claim for compensation benefits and was indicted on one count of offering a false report for filing (a felony) when it was determined that he stabbed himself to collected WC benefits. Johnson City police officer Matthew Romano claimed to have been stabbed by “two men while investigating a suspicious car” on December 30, 2006. After investigation it was learned that the stab wounds were self-inflicted. The officer has been suspended without pay (Sept 11, 2009). He now faces charges of using the mail system to perpetrate a fraud against the employer city.
Finally, a story as old as time: Monica Martinez of Freeport is accused of working a full-time at dental offices while collecting $39,000 in total disability benefits for neck and back injuries which allegedly prevented her from working. (Story Sept 16, 2009). She is charged with violating the WCL and could face four years in prison if convicted.

Greg Lois is the managing partner of LOIS LLC, a 21-attorney law firm dedicated to defending employers and carriers in New York and New Jersey workers' compensation claims. Greg is the author of a popular series of "Handbooks" on workers' compensation, and is the co-author of the 2016 & 2017 Lexis-Nexis New Jersey Workers' Compensation Practice Guide. Greg can be reached at 201-880-7213 or glois@lois-llc.com