Texas Man Pleads Guilty to Workers’ Comp Fraud

By Denise Johnson | August 11, 2011

Sergio Garcia of El Paso, Texas was sentenced on workers’ compensation fraud-related charges, according to Texas Mutual Insurance Company.

The court sentenced Garcia to two years of deferred adjudication and 50 hours of community service. It also ordered Garcia to pay $1,800 in restitution to Texas Mutual.

Garcia reported a job-related injury while working as a laborer for Sun Fab Industrial Contractors Inc. of El Paso, Texas. He claimed he was unable to work as a result of the injury, and Texas Mutual began paying income benefits to him.

Meanwhile, Texas Mutual uncovered evidence that Garcia was working as a truck driver for a Kansas-based company while receiving income benefits.

Investigators call this type of scam double-dipping because the claimant collects benefits for being too injured to work when he or she is, in fact, gainfully employed.

Texas law requires claimants to contact their workers’ comp carrier when they return to work. Left unchecked, double-dipping and other workers’ comp fraud can lead to higher premiums for all Texas employers.

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