On July 11, 2022, the California Department of Insurance announced that Q’Orianka Kilcher—a 32-year-old North Hollywood, CA actress famous for her role on the hit TV show ‘Yellowstone’—has been charged with two felony counts of workers’ compensation fraud. Authors contend that Ms. Kilcher collected more than $90,000.00 of workers’ compensation disability benefits that were not actually due to her. In this article, our Salinas workers’ compensation defense attorney discusses the workers’ compensation fraud charges filed against the actress.

Background: Actress Claimed Neck Injury While Filming Movie in 2018 and 2019

In 2018, Q’Orianka Kilcher was a key cast member in the movie Dora and the Lost City of Gold. The movie—which had a box office gross above $100 million—was filmed largely in Queensland, Australia. During filming, Ms. Kilcher reportedly sustained a neck injury and a shoulder injury. She saw a doctor for the injuries a few times and eventually sought workers’ compensation benefits. In 2019, Ms. Kilcher filed for workers’ compensation benefits—claiming that she declined to take on roles because her neck pain was too severe.

Allegations: Actress Worked While Claiming and Collecting Workers’ Compensation Benefits

California regulators learned that Q’Orianka Kilcher filmed Yellowstone from July 2019 until October 2019. Her employer provided wage information to the state. During this time, Ms. Kilcher reportedly still received workers’ compensation benefits for her neck injury despite being hired, working, and being paid as an actress. In total, the actress received $96,838.00 in workers’ compensation payments that the insurance company claims that she was not entitled to under the law. Ms. Kilcher is now facing two counts of felony workers’ compensation fraud. The criminal case is being prosecuted by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Employers and Insurers are Damaged by Workers’ Compensation Fraud

Workers’ compensation fraud remains a serious issue in our region. The official estimate from state officials is that workers’ compensation fraud costs employers and insurance companies in California between $1 billion and $3 billion each year. Of course, as it raises costs across the system, workers’ compensation fraud hurts other employees as well. It is a serious criminal offense to knowingly provide false or misleading information to obtain workers’ compensation benefits that are not due under the law. Employers, claims administrators, and insurance carriers that suspect that workers’ compensation benefits are being sought on fraudulent grounds have a right to raise a vigorous defense. A workers’ compensation defense attorney can help determine the best approach.

Contact Our Salinas, CA Workers’ Comp Defense Lawyer Today

At Yrulegui & Roberts, we are committed to providing solutions-focused legal guidance and support to clients. If you have any specific questions or concerns about workers’ compensation fraud cases, we are more than ready to help. Contact us today to set up your strictly confidential case review. Our workers’ compensation defense firm provides legal representation to clients in Salinas, Monterey County, and throughout all of Central California.