LANSING — House and Senate Democrats unveiled a plan today to crack down on companies committing payroll fraud, increasing penalties for bad actors while strengthening oversight to protect businesses playing by the rules. Unscrupulous companies stole an estimated $429 million in wages and overtime pay from hardworking Michiganders between 2013 and 2015, impacting more than 2.8 million people. In addition to the impact on individual workers, payroll fraud costs Michigan taxpayers $107 million a year in tax revenue. In response, state Rep. John Cherry (D-Flint), whose House Bill 4875 allows an individual or the Attorney General to sue a person who pursues a fraudulent monetary claim against the government, issued the following statement:

"One of the biggest objections offered when someone tries to reform a broken system is that the solution doesn’t do enough to address the potential for fraud. My legislation deals with it head on: if a person or business tries to game the system and files false claims, either the injured party or the attorney general will be able to sue them. Our comprehensive package tackles every aspect of payroll fraud — including provisions like mine to help protect responsible businesses or employers to ensure the only people being penalized are the ones breaking the law.”