Posted On: June 23, 2010 by Steven J. Malman

Smurfit-Stone to Pay $100,000 to Settle Allegations of Violating Workers’ Compensation Rules

Smurfit-Stone has settled an unlawful business practices case accusing the company of violating workers’ compensation rules, including allegedly trying to conceal worker injuries in an attempt to discourage employees from submitting workers’ compensation claims. According to the District Attorney’s Office’s consumer protection unit, there were instances when Smurfit-Stone workers were not given claim forms and work injuries were either not documented or their reporting was delayed.

By agreeing to settle, Smurfit-Stone is not denying or admitting to any wrongdoing. In addition to the $100,000 civil penalties, $4,293 in restitution will be divided between 11 victims. The settlement comes with an injunction that prevents the company’s owners from disregarding workers’ compensation rules in the future. Smurfit-Stone is currently going through Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.

In a related case, chiropractor Robert Ray Schreiner is charged with 16 felony counts, including conspiracy to deny workers’ compensation benefits to injured workers, making false statements to an insurer, and filing fraudulent insurance claims. Schreiner, who owns California Chiropractic Center and Golden State Physical Therapy, allegedly treated at least six Smurfit-Stone workers for work injuries and is said to have tried to persuade them that the injuries were caused by non-work-related activities. He also is accused of telling injured employees that their employer would pay for the initial visits but that their own insurers would have to cover the rest. The injured employees paid co-payments and deductibles for medical services that should have been covered by their workers’ compensation. The chiropractor is also accused of billing private insurers for workers’ compensation-related services.

Smurfit-Stone settles workers' comp case for $100,000, The Herald, June 17, 2010

Salinas Chiropractor Arrested for Workers' Comp Fraud, ClaimsJournal.com, June 4, 2010


Related Web Resources:

Illinois Workers' Compensation Act (PDF)

Workers' Compensation, Illinois Department of Labor

In Illinois, contact Chicago workers' compensation attorney Steve Malman. Your employer should not be denying you your work injury benefits.

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