No matter what type of business you operate, the cost of carrying workers’ compensation insurance, as well as that of managing claims that arise, can be a significant burden.
For that reason, it’s essential to do everything you can to avoid fraudulent workers’ comp claims. There are many steps you can take to address this issue, but ideally you can avoid hiring anyone likely contemplating workers’ comp fraud in the first place.
An Established Process
No hiring process is guaranteed to eliminate the chance of fraudulent workers’ comp claims from your company, and many workers who eventually commit workers’ comp fraud aren’t planning to do so when you hire them. However, taking full advantage of the tools you have to evaluate potential new hires is an important part of limiting your risk of fraudulent workers’ comp claims, and that starts by having an established, structured hiring process that you follow every time.
Background checks should always be part of this hiring process. They provide valuable clues to an employee’s reliability, as well as potential problem areas. While these may not necessarily exclude an applicant on the spot, they can allow you to go into an interview much better prepared to evaluate the individual on the other side of the table.
Areas to Explore
One good example of this is a background check that reveals a previous worker’s comp claim. This may have been a legitimate claim, and it doesn’t mean the worker is more likely to file another claim in the future, but asking about it will give you good insight into how that person works and their attitude towards safety.
Even for an applicant without a history of worker’s comp claims, asking about safety and the processes they follow on the job can help you get a good idea about how seriously they take these types of issues. You may want to inquire about the circumstances of someone whose work history shows a pattern of job-hopping as well, or about a previous conviction for fraud, even if it’s not related to worker’s comp.
You can also take advantage of the interview setting to make your own expectations very clear to every applicant. Describing your safety system and demonstrating that you take a hands-on approach to this issue will often deter individuals likely to commit worker’s comp fraud from pursuing employment with you, and it’s a good starting point as well in the training process for someone you do eventually want to hire.
Preventing workers comp fraud is not a simple proposition, but it is an achievable goal if you stay vigilant and follow proper procedures. Our team can help you design your system and provide support throughout the process, along with a comprehensive workers’ compensation insurance policy. Contact our offices today to learn more.