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Case 37

On 26 September 2007, the worker lodged an Application for Compensation for a stress injury suffered on 22 August 2007, but he then withdrew the claim prior to it being determined. On 7 January 2008 the worker advised he now wished to take up his entitlements.

The worker was certified as unable to work at all until 5 September 2008, when he was certified fit for suitable duties. He then sourced his own host employment and the necessary arrangements for the host employment were made with the person WorkCover believed owned the host employer on the basis that the worker would commence working for that company once the host program was established.

Investigation revealed that the worker had returned to work as owner and General Manager of the host employment company from at least 28 March 2008 until the end of the claim 21 October 2008 and that person nominated by the worker as the owner of the host employment company was a long term friend of the worker who was aware that the worker had returned to work prior to the host employment commencing.

The worker was charges with fraud for returning to a calling and his friend was charged with proving false and misleading information to WorkCover. Both parties pleaded guilty and the worker was sentenced to 6 months imprisonment wholly suspended for 12 months with a conviction recorded and ordered to pay restitution of $16 447.31 plus costs. Whilst his friend was fined $1000 plus costs, with no conviction recorded.