North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory presented his State of the State address in early February 2015. During his presentation he stated, "Our examination of workers compensation estimates that 40% of workers costs are related to abuse or outright fraud."
Critics and labor advocates argued McCrory's statement in news reports. As of this writing, no valid reports have been produced to the public that reinforce the numbers of fraud or abuse cases the governor cited. Although opinions of decision makers and facts from research remain hot topics, McCrory's statement meant to introduce stronger efforts for identifying workers' compensation fraud in North Carolina.
Whether workplace safety efforts will grow stronger, workers' comp claimants will face more scrutiny, or a combination of both, remains to be seen. No formal proposed changes to the workers' comp application and review process were announced during the State of the State, however, McCrory did "declare a new program to fight workers compensation waste," according to WRAL.
Unfortunately, fraudulent claimants who receive workers' comp benefits tap into a system that genuinely injured or ill workers desperately need to care for themselves and their families. Our workers' comp lawyers in Cary and Raleigh present a few signs of workers' comp fraud here, but abusers make their way through the system everyday across the country. Legitimately injured workers have rights to benefits, and the process to get those benefits may change or include delays if fraud reviews are added.
The problems with workers' comp problems are not limited to the workers. Last year the North Carolina Industrial Commission released a workers' comp fraud alert tool, a system designed to identify employers who fail to hold workers' comp insurance. Learn what to do if your employer does not have workers' compensation insurance.