Not too long ago I had a call from someone that felt like it should be an April Fools call, but it wasn’t.

Basically, the caller was worried about her son. He had received payment for being off work for three months, but apparently was on video, drunk and dancing at a party and joking about how he had faked a work injury so he didn’t have to work all winter. Apparently the insurance company has become aware of this video.

Mom was calling because her son told her he wanted to get a lawyer to get a settlement. Some thoughts on this:

  1. There is zero chance an insurance company is going to offer him a settlement.
  2. It’s more likely they will send the video to the State to have this worker investigated for insurance fraud.
  3. No lawyer we know of, even the slimiest ones, would represent someone who is on video saying that they’ve been scamming the work comp insurance company.
  4. If we had a client do this, we would file to withdraw from their case right away. Every lawyer we know would handle it the same way.

Now I don’t hear more than once or twice a year out of over 1,000 calls/emails from someone who I think is faking their injury. Most people are hard working, honest and just want their legitimate injury taken care of. That’s not to say that some people don’t exaggerate, but the reality is that people aren’t looking to scam the system.

What I will say is that there are lessons here for honestly injured people who have legit Illinois workers’ compensation claims.

First off, don’t do activities that are beyond your restrictions. This guy was claiming terrible back pain and that he could barely walk. In the video he was apparently dancing and jumping up and down.

Second, stay off social media. This super genius reportedly posted his activities on his own social media accounts. You’d have to be an idiot of course to confess a felony online. But for the average, honest worker, I wouldn’t be posting anything. Insurance companies are monitoring your social media accounts. Even if you post something that seems innocent, it could be used against you.

Finally, don’t discuss your case with anyone other than your spouse or your lawyer. People get jealous when someone has a work comp case and they know they might get a settlement. You can’t assume that others are looking out for you or care about you. And also, your case and your possible settlement is none of their business.

Oh and by the way. This super genius criminal apparently also said on tape that he had done this before and “it’s so easy.” I personally hope he ends up in jail as those types of scammers make cases harder for honest workers.