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Fraudulent workers’ compensation claims

WorkCover Queensland has published information relating to three recent prosecutions of workers’ compensation frauds to highlight how seriously workers’ compensation fraud is addressed in Queensland.

The cases are:

  1. A worker was found guilty of fraud for making false claims for reimbursement of travel costs to attend medical appointments. The worker was sentenced to 5 months’ imprisonment (wholly suspended), ordered to repay $5,863.13 to WorkCover and to pay the prosecution’s expenses of $23,908, and a conviction was recorded.
  2. A worker was found guilty of fraud after lodging a common law notice of claim for damages in which they stated they suffered ongoing symptoms from a back injury. Surveillance of the worker showed they were exaggerating their symptoms. The worker was sentenced to 6 months’ imprisonment (wholly suspended) and lost their entitlement to continue with the common law claim. A conviction was recorded, and the worker was ordered to pay the prosecution’s costs of $28,330.17.
  3. A worker pleaded guilty to one charge of fraud, one charge of failing to notify of an engagement in a calling, and five charges of providing false or misleading information, after returning to work while receiving compensation. The worker was sentenced to 6 years’ imprisonment, which would be suspended after serving 6 months in custody. They were also ordered to pay $228,774.43 in restitution and a conviction was recorded.

Defrauding or attempting to defraud WorkCover carries a maximum penalty of 5 years’ imprisonment or 500 penalty units ($68,925 in 2021–2022).

Find out more at worksafe.qld.gov.au.

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