Schemes to Swindle State Unemployment Agencies on the Rise

September 19, 2017

Schemes to Swindle State Unemployment Agencies on the Rise

Internet fraud is a significant threat everywhere. Concurrently, the proliferation of intricate fraud schemes against state unemployment agencies by organized crime is also on the rise. Nationwide, since 2012, the Department of Labor Office of Inspector General (DOL/OIG), Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations reports conducting over 750 major unemployment compensation (UC) investigations that resulted in “1,200 criminal convictions that created over $67.5 million in improper UC payments”.

Historically, there has always been a certain amount of individual fraud related to UC payments but advances in technology have made it easier for multi-claimant scams to financially impact state agencies. The proliferation of organized crime efforts takes advantage of specific state vulnerabilities using stolen personal claimant identification and the anonymity of the Internet. For example,
[list type=”circle”]
[item]Southern California Man Found Guilty in $5 Million Unemployment Insurance Fraud Scheme[/item]
[item]Former Illinois Tax Preparer Sentenced to Four Years in Prison for Obtaining More Than $315,000 Through Identity Theft/UI Fraud[/item]
[item]Florida Man Sentenced to 84 Months in Prison for Identity Theft Scam to Obtain More Than $585,000 from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and the IRS[/item]

State administrators throughout the country are partnering now, more often, with local law enforcement, FBI and DOL/OIG for the purpose of investigating criminal fraud in their UC programs. Should you know of or suspect wrongdoing as it relates to UC benefit payments, please contact your unemployment claims administrator.

Reference: Employment and Training Administration, Advisory System, U.S. Department of Labor, Washington, D.C. 20210, Subject: “Disclosure of Confidential Unemployment Compensation (UC) Information to the Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General for the purpose of investigating UC fraud is mandatory”, December 16, 2016.

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Throughout our membership in the Unemployment Savings Program, First Nonprofit understood our demands, community dynamics, and the importance of seamless services; that allowed us to serve our constituents better.

Prevent Blindness America, Chicago, IL

Because INCS advocates for the operating conditions that allow charter public schools to provide high quality public education, partnering with First Nonprofit was an easy decision. First Nonprofit’s unemployment programs provide our member schools two operating elements crucial to their ability to provide high quality public education: savings and budget certainty. Capable, committed teachers are the key to student success. By participating in the unemployment insurance savings plan, charter public schools gain peace of mind and are able to invest more money in their teachers.

Illinois Network of Charter Schools, Chicago, IL

It has been our sincere pleasure to maintain a strong, vibrant business partnership with First Nonprofit. We greatly admire their strong industry knowledge, technical expertise, constant professionalism, knowledgeable and dedicated staff. They are always extremely responsive, personable and provide us with the necessary guidance and recommendations on a numerous variety of employment scenarios.

Thresholds, Chicago, IL

NYCON members who use First Nonprofit’s programs enjoy enduring savings and improved efficiency. Our association knows that success, because from the beginning, we achieved the same great benefits. Great savings, seamless technology, and responsive service. NYCON highly recommends First Nonprofit’s remarkable unemployment solutions.

New York Council of Nonprofits, Albany, NY

Visually Impaired Preschool Services has been a client of First Non-Profit since it was first offered as a benefit of VisionServe Alliance. We completed a thorough evaluation of cash savings to our agency before taking advantage of this wonderful benefit and it has been a very wise decision. Our experience with the processes from accounting to claims have been professional, expeditious and easy.

Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY

Luckily for us, our interactions regarding any issues with staffing has been very minimal! I can say that all other interactions with regards to billing, 941 reporting, etc. have been extremely pleasant, accommodating and easy to work with. Kim Ghanayem is always prompt, professional and friendly. Thank you so much!

Neurologic Music Therapy Services of Arizona, Phoenix, AZ

First Nonprofit has been easy to work with and makes the administrative process easier and smoother. We enjoy working with you.

Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY

The Ensight Skills Center has enjoyed working with First Nonprofit for several years. We are enrolled in their Unemployment Savings Program and although we have not required a lot of intervention, there have been a few times. I know others have dealt with the same problem of unemployment fraud over the last year and in our case, a call to First Nonprofit (they actually answer their phones) cleared up the issue. They also sent us a letter to send to all our employees telling them what they needed to do to prevent this in the future and protect themselves. What a relief! Over the years if I have questions or concerns, they are happy to listen, advise and help if they can. Another BIG advantage of using First Nonprofit is that all the money that is paid into the Unemployment Savings Program lives on my balance sheet as an asset. The money continues to be Ensight’s not the governments. First Nonprofit has certainly given me peace of mind.

Ensight Skills Center, Inc, Fort Collins, CO