A growing number of people are learning that if you are going to claim you can’t work or need disability insurance payouts to help with your physical limitations, you should avoid posting photos to Facebook showing you on vacation riding jet skis, wrestling with a giant fish, or engaged in other strenuous activities.
With the pervasiveness of social media, people are being outed as insurance disability scammers simply because they were dumb enough to post photos or other entries online showing that their medical conditions are not as bad as they claim, The New York Post recently reported.
Once upon a time insurance companies and the lawyers of employers were relegated to hiring private detective services to follow possible insurance scammers to catch them in the scam. But now many of these scammers are being caught because of their own idiotic devotion to posting their every move on social media.
Social media posts are outing scammers claiming to be physically disabled, mentally depressed, or suffering debilitating post-traumatic stress disorders.
In particular, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance has been successful prosecuting a large number of former city workers, police officers, and firefighters all of whom filed for false benefits payouts. Vance used social media to catch a large number of them, the Post reports.
“Out of 137 total defendants, 120 have copped pleas, and at least two were found guilty after trials, according to the DA’s Office,” the paper reports.
In one case, former NYPD policeman Richard Cosentino posted photos on Facebook of himself landing a giant sailfish despite his claims of being physically disabled from an accident on the job. He pleaded guilty to second-degree grand larceny for accepting tens of thousands in disability payments.
In another case, ex-police officer Glenn Lieberman, who claimed he was disabled from helping save New Yorkers during 9/11, was seen riding a jet ski on Facebook despite his claims of being disabled on the job. He was convicted of taking over $200,000 in disability payments at the expense of the taxpayers of New York.
The paper also reported the conviction for fraud of ex-NYPD cop Louis Hurtado who claimed he was injured on the job but then went on to open a karate school proving that he was quite physically fit, indeed.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at email@example.com.