Red Flags that Employee Embezzlement May Be Taking Place
The following list describes signs that employee embezzlement may be taking place:
FOR CURRENT EMPLOYEES:
• Employee lives a lifestyle unsupported by current family or occupational income.
• Employee exhibits a sudden change in lifestyle and spending habits.
• Employee frequently comments or complains about not having enough money.
• Employee, or employee’s spouse, has a gambling problem.
• Employee, or employee’s spouse, has a problem with alcohol.
• Employee, or employee’s spouse, has a problem with drugs.
• Employee experiences marital conflict.
• Employee engages in an extramarital affair.
• Employee, or employee’s family has accumulated large medical bills.
• Employee’s spouse lost their job.
• Employee is always first in the morning.
• Employee is always last to leave at the end of the day.
• Employee comes in after hours to get work done and has seemingly legitimate reasons for doing so.
• Employee does not take vacation time.
• Employee does not take personal or sick days.
• Employee refuses to run a requested financial or internal report.
• Employee exhibits nervousness when another employee attempts to help them with their duties.
• Employee feels threatened by others being trained on their duties.
• Employees will not train other employees on how to do their duties.
• Employee simply doesn’t allow anyone else to ever do their duties.
• Employee appears resistant to change.
• Employee expresses annoyance with reasonable questions about bookkeeping, billing, or insurance items.
• Employee has been having more difficulties with their job.
• Employee constantly complains about their job, other employees, or the office in general.
• Patients complain about accounting errors.
• Patient comments that they didn’t receive an account statement.
• Deposits only have checks.
• Amount of cash payments has decreased over time
• Amount of write-offs and other adjustments have increased over time
• Increase in Accounts Receivables without corresponding increase in production
• Increase inpatient comments or complaints about payment, billing, or insurance errors
• A drop in income is not supported by a drop in production.
• Deposited cash always appears in nice, even numbers.
• Insurance PPO write-offs are found on a patient’s account, but the patient is not a member of a PPO plan.
• Adjustments to a patient’s account were not approved by the practice owner.
• Fees that are not the standard fees have been charged to an account without the approval of a practice owner.
• Petty Cash or the Charge Fund are found out-of-balance.
• Employee quits unexpectedly, without notice or warning.
FOR POTENTIAL NEW EMPLOYEES:
• New applicant is hesitant to discuss details of a previous job.
• New applicant’s former employer shows reluctance in providing detailed information about the potential employee.
• New applicant’s resume has unexplained lapses of work for a period of time.
• New applicants will not consent to a background check.
Stuart J. Oberman, Esq.
Stuart J. Oberman is the founder and President of Oberman Law Firm. Mr. Oberman graduated from Urbana University and received his law degree from John Marshall Law School. Mr. Oberman has been practicing law for over 30 years, and before going into private practice, Mr. Oberman was in-house counsel for a Fortune 500 Company.
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