Former N.J. Chiropractor Sentenced for Fraud Claim

August 23, 2004

New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice Director Vaughn McKoy announced that a former Atlantic County chiropractor has been sentenced to prison for attempting to obtain more than $24,000 in insurance money by submitting fraudulent disability claims.

According to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden-Brown, Virginia A. Fatato, 44, formerly of Hammonton, Atlantic County, was ordered by Camden County Superior Court Judge Irvin Snyder to serve 364 days in county jail, perform 600 hours of community service, followed by two years probation. The Court agreed to allow Fatato to serve the jail time in Palm Beach County, Florida, where she currently resides.

On June 28, Fatato pleaded guilty before Judge Snyder to charges contained in a Dec. 2, 2002 State Grand Jury indictment. At the guilty plea hearing, Fatato reportedly admitted that she filed a disability claim with Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company on Aug., 28, 2000, seeking $14,982 in disability payments for a two year period with decreasing amounts thereafter during the course of her lifetime. Fatato advised the insurance company that she was unable to work as a chiropractor as a result of a recurring injury suffered in a 1994 automobile accident. Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. denied the claims and referred the matter to the Division of Criminal Justice – Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor.

An investigation by the Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor determined that not only did Fatato reportedly work out regularly at a Hammonton gym, but that she also obtained employment as a chiropractor at another gym located in Turnersville, Gloucester County.

Fatato was previously convicted on April 17, 1999, for theft by deception and falsifying records on charges related to phony claims submitted to insurance companies through her Hammonton chiropractic practice. Fatato was sentenced to probation following the conviction. On May 21, 2001, the Chiropractic Board suspended Fatato’s chiropractic license for a period of five years.

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