Michigan Criminal Lawyer, Josh Jones

Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) Falsely Reporting Unemployment Fraud Claims

Unemployment Insurance Agency Falsely Claiming Unemployment Fraud

When an individual losing his or her job, they may be able to obtain unemployment benefits through the State of Michigan. When filing a claim for such benefits, an individual will essentially go through an application process of fact checking and reporting through the Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA). For the most part, the UIA’s process is automated in many instances, electronic online interfaces are used, and it can be tedious and long for some individuals. There had been issues with this system, which led to a voluminous number of fraud claims submitted by the department on individuals looking to obtain benefits between approximately 2013-2015.

Unemployment fraud within Michigan has been relatively high within the last several years. One may think this is due to the hard time faces by Michigan residents and an increase in criminality. However, the relative facts on why there was an increase in unemployment fraud was not to due the individual claimants. Instead, it was the UIA who were falsely reporting unemployment fraud due to misreporting, interpretation and misunderstanding within the UIA’s process and automated system. Essentially, there was no proper way to weed of mistakes made when self reporting to a machine, especially when the follow-up questioning would come by electronic or regular mailer with no direction other than submitting additional information. The process of identifying unemployment fraud and the reasoning for the allegation varies among each individual.

The ability to obtain information on the issues with how the UIA reported unemployment fraud was long because the department would not release all documentation and information immediately. Once all of the information was reviewed it became apparent the underlying issue was with the automated reporting process and technology. The automated system would not always provide accurate information, dates and underlying reasons for the unemployment claim being submitted by an individual, and thus when reporting the system would flag an individual for potential unemployment fraud. If an individual is not inapt or unable to prove something that is not true that individual will then be facing long administrative procedures in order to correct the alleged unemployment fraud. It is worth noting that unemployment fraud claims usually attach some monetary restitution to be paid or provided to the State or UIA as reimbursement for the fraudulent act. Moreover, these unemployment fraud claims are generally civil in nature; however, this does not mean criminal charges could or would not ensue. As always, unemployment fraud claims (like many legal ideals) are and can be complex and layers, making them complicated to navigate.

Because of the issues facing unemployment fraud claims, it is always necessary to obtain legal representation. Josh Jones has been involved in numerous unemployment fraud claim cases involving the UIA and understands the issues those faced the last few years. He has personally experienced the automated self reporting problems. And due to this, he highly stresses the importance of contacting counsel whenever alleged to have committed any form of fraud. Even when an individual knows no improper action has been committed on his or her own part, the possible repercussions can be grave. Competent legal representation can assist, correct and protect you legal rights. It’s what they do. As always, never rely on any information, advice or comment on any website on the internet when wanting to represent, defend, claim, or assert before any court, entity, or governmental body without first obtaining advice and guidance of legal representation. Know the law, maintain your rights, and lawyer-up.