To most, white-collar crimes like health insurance (health care) fraud seem minor, especially compared with other offenses. However, state and federal governments take these crimes seriously, often charging them as felony offenses.
Michigan is one such state that takes a harsh stance against health insurance fraud, charging them as felony white-collar crimes. If convicted, you could face up to four years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.
What are some examples of health insurance fraud?
Doctors and other professionals employed in medical facilities can benefit from understanding health insurance fraud. Knowledge of this offense can ensure that you make no mistakes that might lead to fraud charges. Below are several examples of fraudulent insurance acts in the healthcare industry.
- Billing patients for services never rendered
- Ordering unnecessary diagnostic tests to increase a medical bill
- Charging an insurer or patient for more costly treatments than were provided
- Billing the steps involved in one treatment as several treatments
- Performing unnecessary treatments to increase a patient’s bill
- Claiming that treatments not covered by insurance are medically necessary
- Falsifying a diagnosis to justify expensive procedures (surgeries, etc.)
In addition to the criminal consequences of health insurance fraud, those convicted will likely face severe harm to their reputations. As a medical professional, damage to your reputation can devastate your entire career. It is always best to avoid a conviction for white-collar crimes such as insurance fraud.
Learning more about Michigan fraud laws and penalties can increase your odds of overcoming the charges you face. Such knowledge may help you prove that your acts were not intentional and that you did not mean to cause any harm.