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Dear Old Dad

Senior Director of Strategic Alliances
LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

It’s always interesting to see what illegal actions a fraudster is willing to take to make a little bit of cash. A Randolph, N.Y. woman was willing to trade her freedom for a few thousand dollars in illegally gained workers’ compensation benefits. (Why do most fraudsters neglect to consider the consequences of their actions before they do something stupid?)

Bonnie Slater was convicted of stealing nearly $4,000 in workers’ compensation benefits. She forged her dead father’s signature on six checks after his death in August 2017. (Did she think these checks were an inheritance from her dear old dad?)

While desperate times often call for desperate measures, it’s never wise to steal from benefit programs. (The article does not explain why Slater justified forging her father’s signature. I’m sure if you asked her now, she would say it wasn’t worth the risk of going to jail.)

Slater had the responsibility to inform the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) of her father’s death. This would have enabled nearly $4,000 to remain in the state’s fund to be used by other people who deserved financial assistance due to an on-the-job injury. (Instead, Slater was selfish and thought she could scam the WCB without being noticed. Well surprise, surprise. Illegal actions have severe consequences.)

Slater pleaded guilty to misdemeanor third-degree forgery and petit larceny charges. She was sentenced to serve a year-long jail term and ordered to pay $3,933.78 in restitution for committing workers’ compensation fraud. (I doubt dear old dad would be very proud of his daughter if he were still around today.)

Today’s Fraud of the Day case comes from the article, “N.Y. Woman Sentenced for Stealing More Than $3K in Workers’ Comp Benefits,” published by Insurance Journal on November 19, 2020.

A New York woman who stole $3,065.28 in workers’ compensation benefits by forging her late father’s name in order to cash the checks has been sentenced to one year in jail.

Bonnie S. Slater of Randolph, N.Y., was sentenced in Cattaraugus County Court before Hon. Ronald Ploetz after pleading guilty in September to forgery in the third degree and petit larceny, both misdemeanors. She was ordered to pay $3,933.78 in restitution and costs.

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