Ohio Man Ordered to Pay Back Over $13K In WC Fraud Case

                               

Springfield, OH (WorkersCompensation.com)-A resident of Springfield, Ohio has pleaded guilty to a fifth-degree felony count of worker's compensation fraud and ordered to pay the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) $13,518 in restitution.

35-year-old Clark A. Howard was working as a delivery driver when he was injured in an auto accident. He received temporary benefits from March 31, 2016, to November 28, 2017. The BWC special investigations department had received an outside tip about Howard in early 2017, saying that he had been working in a pizza shop in London, Ohio while receiving the benefits. Investigators discovered that Howard was not just working for the pizza shop, but was also employed as a machine press operator for a business in town.

Investigators said they obtained evidence that confirmed Howard had purposefully withheld and falsified his employment to collect BWC benefits to which he was not entitled. "We're here to support injured workers as they try to get back to work and back to life, not supplement the income of able-bodied people cheating our system," said BWC Administrator/CEO Stephanie McCloud in a press release.

WorkersCompensation.com reached out to BWC spokesman Tony Gottschlich, who added, "Fraud drives up the cost of workers' compensation for everyone in the system. That's why we have a special investigations department dedicated to detecting, deterring, investigating, and prosecuting it. But we also count on the public to let us know if they suspect fraudulent activity — either by a worker, employer, or health care provider — so we can investigate and put an end to it. We will honor their privacy if they wish to remain anonymous."

The judge also sentenced Howard to 30 months of community control (probation) instead of having to serve jail time.


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