The president of a Pennsylvania trucking company has been placed on a four year probation period. The company accepted payments for workers’ compensation insurance but subsequently knowingly failed to provide the coverage for its workers. The company’s president plead guilty to not carrying the insurance, which is designed to cover workers in the event of a workplace injury. The woman originally faced hundreds of charges related to the incident; however, the judge accepted her negotiated plea.
A judge accepted the woman’s guilty pleas for a third degree misdemeanor charge against the company and for three felony accounts. Consequences of the felony charges include three years’ probation and a $450 fine. She must also undergo DNA testing and will not be allowed to have firearms. Restitution in the amount of $54.067.85 must also be paid to the U.S. Postal Service based on the payments the trucking company received to cover workers’ compensation insurance.
No employees were injured during the period of non-payment; however, charges were brought after it was discovered that more than eight months had past with the company failing to carry the required insurance. According to police, the trucking company was under contract with the U.S. Postal Service, through which the company received government funds that were intended to be used to maintain workers’ compensation insurance. However, the government money was allegedly diverted and used for other purposes.
Fortunately, no one was injured during the period in which the company did not carry insurance to cover workplace injuries. Nevertheless, if a worker is injured due to an employers failure to provide a safe workplace, he or she could choose to seek compensation from the employer. People who are injured in the workplace may find that consulting a lawyer in workers’ compensation cases may possibly assist them in filing a claim.
Source: Public Opinion, “Joann Wildeson gets probation for failing to pay workers”, Samantha Cossick, May 22, 2013