Massachusetts employers are on alert for unemployment insurance fraud, following a state investigation into illegal payments.
Scammers have reportedly used stolen identities to receive unemployment checks. State labor officials say the scheme started in March, and while the government paid about 280,000 dollars in fraudulent claims, they discovered the problem in time to avert another 9 million dollars in losses. Chris Geehern is spokesperson for the Associated Industries of Massachusetts. He says the organization is urging members to double-check their unemployment records for suspicious claims. He says several employers have found discrepancies.
“They have found claims for people who are clearly still working, or have found claims filed for employees whose names they are not familiar with,” says Geehern.
He says fraudulent claims can raise unemployment taxes for employers, and compromise private employee information. State officials say no arrests have been made.