COLUMBUS – A Sidney couple’s attempt to defraud the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) was among 11 cases closed in June and July. Total convictions for BWC is 47 for calendar year 2020.
“Workers’ compensation fraud can happen anywhere in Ohio,” said BWC Administrator/CEO Stephanie McCloud. “That’s why we have dedicated investigators in every corner of the state to uncover folks — whether they’re employers, injured workers or medical providers — who try to cheat the system.”
Among the June cases David and Wendy Juillerat were sentenced on felony charges related to workers’ compensation fraud after a BWC investigation found the husband mowing lawns, using a snow blower and chopping wood while claiming to be permanently and totally disabled from work.
Shelby County Common Pleas Court Judge James Stevenson sentenced David Juillerat on June 8 to five years of probation in lieu of jail time and a fine of $1,000 for his conviction on a reduced charge of attempted tampering with records, a fourth-degree felony.
Juillerat’s wife, Wendy Juillerat, was sentenced three days earlier on a similar charge, attempted complicity to tampering with records, also a fourth-degree felony. Stevenson sentenced her to five years of probation in lieu of jail time and to pay court costs.
David Juillerat applied to BWC in 2018 for permanent total disability benefits, claiming a work injury left him unable to drive a car or walk without the assistance of a walker. Acting on a tip that he might be faking his injury, agents with BWC’s Special Investigations Department surveilled David for several weeks in 2019. They filmed him on multiple occasions entering and leaving medical offices with a walker. Away from a medical office, however, agents filmed him walking, shopping, working on his car, chopping wood, and other activities, all without the use of a cane or walker.
As for Wendy Juillerat, agents say she admitted to helping her husband complete his application for permanent total disability and accompanied him to numerous doctor’s appointments in which she would exaggerate his physical limitations in order for the disability to be granted.
Based on BWC’s investigation, David Juillerat’s application for disability benefits was denied in late 2019, saving BWC an estimated $233,668 in benefits over the projected life of the claim.
David and Wendy Juillerat were both indicted by the Shelby County grand jury in November 2019, and each was charged with tampering with records, a third-degree felony.
David Juillerat entered a guilty plea to an amended charge of attempted tampering with records, a fourth degree felony, on Feb. 10, 2020. Wendy Juillerat entered a guilty plea to an amended charge of attempted tampering with records, a fourth degree felony, on Feb. 10, 2020.
Original sentencing dates for the pair were delayed because courts were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.