Ohio business owners owe more than $800K following fraud-related convictions

Three Northeast Ohio men owe the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) more than $800,000 after investigators discovered they were operating their businesses without workers’ compensation coverage. “These business owners learned the hard way they cannot operate their business without workers’ compensation coverage, and now they owe us hundreds of thousands of dollars,” said BWC … Continue reading Ohio business owners owe more than $800K following fraud-related convictions

Fraudulent billing leads to occupational therapist’s conviction

Agency secures 6 fraud-related convictions in December    A northeast Ohio occupational therapist was convicted last month for felony workers’ compensation fraud for billing the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) for treatment services she did not provide to patients. Susanna Kagalitskaya Freedman, of Euclid, pleaded guilty Dec. 17 in a Cuyahoga County court to a … Continue reading Fraudulent billing leads to occupational therapist’s conviction

BWC secures 14 fraud-related convictions in October

Fraudsters owe BWC more than $283,000 in restitution The Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) secured 14 fraud-related convictions in October, with those convicted owing BWC a combined $283,146 in restitution. Those convicted include injured workers found working while collecting disability benefits, family members collecting their deceased parent’s compensation benefits, and business owners whose coverage … Continue reading BWC secures 14 fraud-related convictions in October

Happy Anniversary to Us!

On Nov. 14, 2019, our BWC Special Investigations Department celebrated the second anniversary of its Fraud Hotline system. We launched this system during Fraud Awareness Week 2017 as an important new customer service tool for external sources to report their suspicions of workers’ compensation fraud. What a successful launch and two years it has been! … Continue reading Happy Anniversary to Us!

Fraud of the Day during Fraud Awareness Week

By Jeff Baker, BWC Special Investigations Department When the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) created its Special Investigations Department (SID) in 1993, investigative professionals in the new department knew they would need to do more than detect, identify and investigate suspected workers’ compensation fraud. To fully meet the department’s mandate and mission, SID professionals would need to also deter fraud. We felt one of the most … Continue reading Fraud of the Day during Fraud Awareness Week

A letter from Jim Wernecke – Director of BWC Special Investigations

As Director of the BWC Special Investigations Department (SID), I am honored to kick off Fraud Awareness Week. I invite you to view my video message, “Fraud Hurts Us All.” In the video I discuss how workers’ compensation fraud increases premiums for employers, which reduces the money employers can invest in their employees, community and … Continue reading A letter from Jim Wernecke – Director of BWC Special Investigations

Northeast Ohio business owners owe BWC nearly $1.3 million following fraud convictions

Two northeast Ohio businessmen must pay the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) nearly $1.3 million in restitution following their recent convictions on multiple fraud charges in separate, unrelated cases. “We look forward to recouping these dollars and directing them where they belong — taking care of injured workers, creating safe workplaces, and giving employers … Continue reading Northeast Ohio business owners owe BWC nearly $1.3 million following fraud convictions

Cincinnati caterer convicted of workers’ comp fraud

Woman ran catering business while collecting disability benefits A Cincinnati woman claiming to be permanently disabled from work owes the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) nearly $41,000 after her felony conviction Oct. 24 for workers’ compensation fraud. Michelle D. Smith, 57, pleaded guilty to the fifth-degree felony in the Franklin County Common Pleas Court … Continue reading Cincinnati caterer convicted of workers’ comp fraud

Nearly $1 million owed BWC in employer fraud case

Cleveland-area business owner convicted of fraud Monday A northeast Ohio business owner owes the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation nearly $1 million in restitution following his conviction Monday in Cleveland on workers’ compensation fraud charges. Robert E. Fitz, an attorney and owner of Action Maids residential cleaning company in Westlake, Ohio, pleaded guilty to a … Continue reading Nearly $1 million owed BWC in employer fraud case