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  • Writer's pictureDan Fleming

Surveillance / Fraud

Experience has shown us that some injured workers will prolong their return to work by malingering or exaggerating their disabilities. Surveillance investigations should be initiated when you have good reason to believe the worker is misrepresenting his or her disability, and when visual evidence can be utilized or be of benefit in closing or managing the claim. In those instances, conducting covert surveillance and gathering video evidence of the injured workers' disability and activity level is necessary to manage the claim effectively and avoid paying undeserved benefits.

Surveillance video may also be beneficial - or necessary in some cases - for establishing evidence that supports a fraud investigation, potentially resulting in criminal prosecution. The goal in the fraud investigation is to determine whether fraudulent activity has occurred and to identify the course of action that should be pursued. That may lead to a recovery method that would include collection of monies owed, or civil / criminal prosecution.

There are three main categories of fraud investigations: worker, employer and provider. You may recognize the indicators when dealing with the injured worker, but there are other red flags that may alert you to the need for further investigation of other types of possible fraud.


In criminal prosecutions you must establish proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. There must be an opportunity for fraudulent activity. Three factors are necessary in establishing this activity:

  • You must establish monetary or other loss

  • Crime - the action must be a criminal offense

  • Intent (motive) - you must establish that the individual knew of or intended to commit the crime

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