A ‘Yellowstone’ actress has been charged with insurance fraud after collecting nearly $97,000 in disability benefits while working on the show, authorities said Monday.
Q’Orianka Kilcher, 32, of North Hollywood, has been charged with two counts of workers’ compensation insurance fraud, according to the California Department of Insurance.
The department said Kilcher received $96,838 in disability benefits even though she worked on “Yellowstone” from July 2019 to October 2019. Kilcher played Angela Blue Thunder on the Paramount Network show.
Kilcher said she injured her neck and shoulder while starring in the 2018 film “Dora and the Lost City of Gold,” according to the state insurance department statement. She saw a doctor but did not respond to an insurance company handling her claim.
A year later, Kilcher told the insurance company that she needed treatment and had been offered work since the injuries, but couldn’t take it because she was in too much pain, according to the press release. Around this time, she began collecting disability benefits, according to state officials.
But an investigation found Kilcher was working, making the benefits she received “undeserved”, according to the statement.
Kilcher was arraigned in May shortly after she surrendered, according to the Insurance Department. His next court date is scheduled for August 7.
Kilcher’s attorney did not immediately respond Tuesday morning to a request for comment from NBC News.
Attorney Michael Becker told The Associated Press that Kilcher was injured while riding in a production vehicle.
“Third-party doctors verified his injury and his entitlement to benefits. Ms. Kilcher was always upfront with her doctors and healthcare providers … and she never intentionally accepted benefits she didn’t believe she was entitled to,” Becker said.
Kilcher “will vigorously defend herself and demand that she enjoy the presumption of innocence both inside and outside the courthouse,” he said.