Scam Buster: Unemployment Fraud

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This is Kingston Osborne. He received over $9,000 in unemployment benefits by lying.

“If a claimant who is receiving unemployment benefits returns to work and does not report it, they are in violation of the Unemployment Compensation Fraud Program,” says Commissioner Fitzgerald Washington with the Alabama Department of Labor.

That’s exactly what Osborne and others from the Mobile area did recently. Eight others to be exact, have been benefitting from your tax dollars. Willie Cobbs continued receiving over $8,000 and Felicia Dailey got over $6,000 in unemployment benefits. And that’s just for the month of January. The Department of Labor sends out emails with new perpetrators once a month.

“Unemployment compensation benefits can serve as a lifeline to those who truly need it,” says Washington.

According to the Alabama Unemployment Compensation Handbook, those drawing unemployment must continue to file a claim each week. So it’s not as if these people simply forgot to mention they had found jobs. They knowingly filed weekly claims.

It’s the responsibility of the employee when they get a job to notify the unemployment agency, however that may not happen in every case. So now experts are urging employer to do their jobs, fill out the proper paperwork and make sure their employee has been taken off the benefits roll.

These men and women will serve jail time as well as pay court fees in addition to paying back the money they wrongly received from unemployment.

“Our investigators work continuously with the local district attorney’s office in order to identify and prosecute these crimes.”

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