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Unemployment insurance fraud is any action that submits to the state system for unemployment benefits fraudulent information. That could take many forms. It could be fraudulent information regarding whether you were terminated or whether you quit your job, whether you are currently able and looking for work, whether you’re able to work, and whether you’re working while collecting unemployment benefits. So, for example, if you’re collecting unemployment benefits and you’re working a side job, but they’re paying you what we refer to as under the table in cash, that would be considered unemployment insurance fraud. Or if you’re reporting that you’re actively looking for work, but you’re just sitting on your couch collecting unemployment, that can also constitute unemployment insurance fraud. If you voluntarily quit a job, but are reporting that you were terminated or laid off for some reason, similarly, that could be unemployment insurance fraud.

Is Failing To Report New Employment Considered Unemployment Fraud?

Yes. The second that you are reemployed while receiving unemployment insurance benefits, you have to report that because that would usually mean you’re no longer eligible for unemployment insurance. Failing to report a new employment status is considered unemployment insurance fraud if you continue to collect unemployment insurance benefits.

Is Misrepresenting Or Failing To Present Evidence Of Actively Looking For Employment Considered Unemployment Crime?

Yes, most states require that when you are on unemployment insurance and are receiving benefits, you continue to look for employment actively. They require that you attest to that fact periodically. If you are lying or misrepresenting that fact, again, you’re sitting on your couch and not actively looking for work, that be the basis for a fraud charge.

Is Unemployment Fraud Or Unemployment Insurance Fraud Going To Be Considered A State-Level Offense Or A Federal Offense Or Is It Both?

It can be considered both. State and federal systems have laws regarding unemployment insurance fraud. Most cases involving unemployment insurance fraud will be state-level just because they’re not going to be very large. When we’re talking about significant money, only substantial cases would likely end up at a federal level.

Can Employers Be Charged With Unemployment Insurance Fraud? What Are Some Examples?

Yes, they can. Employers can be charged under unemployment insurance fraud in several different ways. Sometimes, shell corporations are developed and hire people for a very short time and then report them as terminated to collect insurance payment. Another way is when they do not adequately report the company’s payroll, so if the company reports 10 employees, but in reality, it has 15. This is considered unemployment insurance fraud because they are cheating the state out of the funds they’re supposed to be paying per employee.

Another way is to underreport how much they pay their employees because depending on how much they pay their employees is how much they have to pay the state for unemployment insurance. So, that’s another way that an employer can be charged with unemployment insurance fraud.

Did Some States Temporarily Waive The Work Search Requirement For Unemployment Benefits In Response To The Coronavirus Pandemic?

You have to look at the individual state where you are drawing unemployment benefits, but yes, most states have suspended the work search requirement. For example, In Florida, that requirement has been suspended until February 2021, and it remains to be seen if it will be extended further.

For more information on Unemployment Insurance Fraud In Florida, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (305) 791-6529 today.