Eight Florida men have been charged with contracting without a license and failing to obtain workers’ compensation insurance, after a sting operation led by state and local authorities.
The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office and the Florida Department of Financial Services did not provide details about the sting operation. But in previous stings, conducted around Florida about twice a year, authorities have advertised for construction services. When the men showed up to see the property, investigators checked their credentials and found no contractors’ licenses and no evidence of workers’ comp insurance to cover workers.
“Performing construction work without workers’ compensation insurance and the required contractors licenses is not only illegal, but dangerous,” Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, head of DFS, said in a news release. “Taking advantage of hard-working Floridians just to save a few bucks is despicable and puts customers and employees at risk.”
The operation was done in conjunction with the DFS’ Division of Investigative and Forensic Services, the National Insurance Crime Bureau and the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. Patronis said his office’s detectives have made more than 1,500 arrests for workers’ comp fraud since he took office in 2017.
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