On March 16, 2009, the Assembly passed a bill (A3569) that would impose criminal penalties against employers that commit Workers’ Compensation infractions. Within 72 hours of determining that an employer knowingly failed to provide workers’ compensation coverage, misrepresented one or more employees as independent contractors, or provided false, incomplete or misleading information concerning the number of employees, the Director of the Division of Workers’ Compensation may issue a stop-work order against it. The stop-work order would apply to every work site at which a violation was found. Additionally, an employer found to have committed one of these acts would be guilty of a disorderly persons offense or guilty of a crime of the fourth degree if the violation was knowing. An identical bill (S2498) is pending before the NJ State Senate.
Note: This article was published in the April 2009 issue of the New Jersey eAuthority.