For those who are going through a divorce, there is usually the issue of property division to deal with. Often, couples will negotiate the terms of this division outside of the courtroom. When both parties agree on one or more terms of their divorce, they may mistakenly assume that that makes their decision legal. In Michigan and other states, this is not the case for family law.
One example of this is a case from another state where the couple agreed for the wife to remain on the husband’s insurance after the divorce was final in 2014. The 50-year-old man had insurance through the city for which he worked. His 47-year-old wife remained on the policy and filed claims in 2015, saying that she was still married to her ex. The man admitted to police that he knew his ex-wife was still on the policy.
Both the man and his wife were charged with health care fraud, which carries a maximum felony of four years. The woman was found guilty of making a false claim for health care fraud and for concealing vital information. She was fined to 50 days, with 50 days served, 150 hours community service, and $110,000 restitution to Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Her husband, who pleaded no contest, has not been sentenced yet.
The parties contend that they thought the husband was supposed to provide insurance for the wife and therefore should keep her on his policy. The company claims that they knew that they were committing fraud and brought in witnesses to back that up. Anyone who is going through a divorce in Michigan could benefit from consulting with a family attorney who can explain the rules of family law. He or she would be able to make both parties aware of situations like that of this couple and help them to avoid criminal charges.
Source: thedailynews.cc, “Former Greenville police chief’s ex-wife gets time served for health care fraud“, Elisabeth Waldon, July 1, 2017