Vulnerable

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People who enjoy caring for others can have a rewarding career as a home health aide. Those who choose the profession take care for vulnerable patients who suffer from chronic illnesses or disabilities, are elderly, or need care in their own homes. Even though they serve as an important resource for doctors and nurses, the career does not pay very well. A Peekskill, New York home healthcare employer committed unemployment fraud by neglecting to pay his home health aides. (He took advantage of his employees’ loyalty and put his vulnerable clients at risk.)

The Northern Westchester, New York home health company’s owner hired home health aides over two-and-a-half years to provide basic assistance to patients including services such as dressing, bathing and preparation of meals. (But, here’s the problem – the business owner neglected to pay his aides, setting off a chain reaction of employees refusing to work. That obviously created a predicament for the patients who needed personalized care.)

The home healthcare company owner defrauded the New York State unemployment insurance contribution system by falsifying business records, such as W-2 forms, and reported wages that he never paid to his employees.

The 67-year-old company owner was sentenced to one year in jail for neglecting to pay more than $135,000 in wages to 67 employees. (I wonder how many patients were impacted.) He was also ordered to pay full restitution in the amount of $135,161.79 in back wages to his employees. (This is in addition to $66,000 he owes the state’s unemployment insurance program.)

This fraudster took advantage of the state’s unemployment insurance fund, that provides basic protections for all employees. (Thankfully, today’s article does not mention that any patients were harmed due to the home healthcare company owner’s neglect to pay wages.) Congratulations to the team of investigators and prosecutors who fought for the home healthcare aides who deserve to earn a living for providing such a valuable service to vulnerable citizens.

Today’s “Fraud of the Day” is based on an article entitled, “Peekskill Home Health Agency Owner Convicted of $135K Wage Theft,” published by Peekskill Daily Voice on September 27, 2017.

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. – A Northern Westchester employer has been sentenced to jail time after pleading guilty to his involvement in a scheme to induce health care workers to provide home health care services without pay.

New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced on Wednesday that 67-year-old Arthur Anyah, the owner of Mical Home Health Care Agency, Inc. in Peekskill, has been sentenced to one year in jail after defrauding 67 employees out of more than $135,000 in wages after pleading guilty last July.

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Larry Benson
Larry Benson is currently the Director of Strategic Alliances for Revenue Discovery and Recovery at LexisNexis Risk Solutions. In this role, Benson is responsible for developing partnerships for the tax and revenue and child support enforcement verticals. He focuses on embedded companies that have a need for third-party analytics to enhance their current offerings.