Many employees who are injured at work have a legal right to workers’ compensation benefits. But businesses often have safeguards in place to protect them from fraudulent claims. Workers’ compensation fraud is a crime. And because Ontario employers are exclusively responsible for workers’ comp costs, fraudulent claims can cost businesses millions of dollars – and even put them at risk of bankruptcy.
Surveillance can help insurance fraud investigators to find evidence, and social media is being increasingly used as another tool.
What information is available?
Social media can help investigators to identify claimants by photographs or reveal personal information about a claimant’s personal activities, whereabouts at certain times or other information that could be used as evidence against a claim. Many individuals have public social media profiles that contain a great deal of personal information. A claimant might also post a photo or statement that could help an investigator identify possible fraud.
How can it help?
Surveillance can sometimes show claimants engaged in activities that their reported injuries would have prevented them from doing. By combining the use of social media and surveillance, investigators can sometimes find information that enables them to smoke out fraudulent claims. Surveillance can be costly for businesses, but the cost of workers’ compensation fraud could be higher.
Of course, not all claims that are denied or disputed are fraudulent. As a business owner, you have a vested financial interest in doing what’s right for your company – and your employees. Going the extra mile to investigate workers’ comp claims may be a worthwhile step in certain cases.