Upstate N.Y. Stone Mason Under-Reported Workers’ Comp, Says Fund

May 14, 2006

An upstate New York employer’s alleged attempt to pay lower premium than required for his workers’ compensation policy with The New York State Insurance Fund began to unravel after he filed a claim for an injured employee, but allegedly left the employee’s name off the claim form, according to insurance officials and police.

New York State Police in Rochester reported they arrested Vincent S. Buonanno for violating section 114.3 of the Workers’ Compensation Law and a first-degree charge of offering a false instrument for filing

Buonanno, who officials said owns a stone mason business in Fairport, N.Y., was arrested May 4, according to NYSIF CEO/Executive Director David P. Wehner.

NYSIF auditors claim they found that Buonanno allegedly defrauded NYSIF of $5,233 by failing to report proper payroll amounts to the insurance carrier. Buonanno allegedly employed a worker who filed a claim in 2004 for an injury he sustained on the job.

Investigators said Buonanno filed the claim, but did not provide the name of the worker on the claim form. He was under-reporting his payroll to avoid paying proper insurance premiums, according to auditors.

The case was referred to NYSIF’s Division of Confidential Investigations and resulted in Buonanno’s arrest.

Indictments and criminal charges are accusations only. Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Source: NYSIF

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