Albany, NY – New York State Inspector General Catherine Leahy Scott recently announced that a City of Rochester woman who defrauded the workers’ compensation system was sentenced to jail time, five years of probation and nearly $34,604 in restitution for stealing Workers’ Compensation insurance benefits to which she was not entitled.
Valerie Everett, 44, of Lyell Avenue, Rochester, was sentenced in Rochester City Court to eight weekends in jail, as well as probation and restitution. The sentence stems from her January 3, 2017 guilty plea to Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree, a felony.
An investigation by Inspector General Leahy Scott found that Everett had been receiving workers’ compensation benefits since 2002 when she reportedly suffered knee and leg injuries after she slipped and fell off of a curb in the parking lot of the fast-food restaurant where she worked.
The investigation found that in June 2008, Everett began working at Sutherland Global Services, Inc., in Rochester, New York. In November 2014, Everett left that job and began working at Time Warner Cable. Between 2009 and 2015, Everett falsely represented to her Workers’ Compensation insurance carrier in writing on four separate occasions, as well as verbally, that she was not working in any capacity. Between May 2009 and September 2015, Everett received $34,604 in workers’ compensation benefits, about $211 every other week, to which she was not entitled.
“This defendant spent years defrauding a benefits system meant for honest, hard-working New Yorkers, and stole tens of thousands of dollars to which she was not entitled,” said Inspector General Leahy Scott. “I will continue dedicating my office to the protection of this critical benefits system while holding anyone accountable who takes illicit and unfair advantage of it.”
Under State law, employers are required to maintain Workers’ Compensation coverage for their employees, and employees are expected to provide truthful information regarding their work activity to insurance carriers and the Workers’ Compensation Board during the time they are receiving benefits.
Inspector General Leahy Scott thanked Liberty Mutual Insurance Company for its assistance with the investigation, the New York State Police for their assistance with the arrest and Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley and her office for prosecuting this matter.
Source: NY Inspector General