Over the past week, we’ve heard of many cases where fraudulent unemployment claims were received for employees who are still employed. A recent article in the New York Times reports unemployment claim fraud has skyrocketed and with unemployment claims reaching record numbers, employers need to diligently manage unemployment costs to mitigate the impact of fraudulent claims. To that end, we’re providing the following general best practices to assist you:
- Understand and adhere to response deadlines. Every state has specific deadlines for employers to respond to unemployment claims filed by former employees. Promptly responding to unemployment claims is the key factor to keep unemployment costs from rising.
- Respond promptly to preserve appeals rights. Timely appeals to claims determinations allow employers to protest incorrect initial claims rulings and establish an unemployment hearing to avoid benefit charges.
- Audit all unemployment benefit charges for accuracy and protest inaccuracies. Charge statements may be issued weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually based on the state agency. Reviewing all individuals (charges) assessed, will ensure erroneous and fraudulent charges are prevented.
It’s also important to note that fraudulent unemployment claims aren’t just a problem for your organization – they can also have a significant impact on your employees. Investigators from the U.S. Secret Service warned Americans this week that these fraudsters possess “extensive records of personally identifiable information,” putting people at risk not just for unemployment fraud, but for myriad types of identity theft.
To help protect your employees and their family, we are encouraging all employers to offer employees a special enrollment period for Identity Guard to ensure they’re protected with around-the-clock monitoring and remediation during this precarious time. This will provide employees the option to enroll for the first time, expand existing coverage to include their families, and/or select a high-tier Identity Guard plan to maximize their protection.
If you’re interested in a special enrollment period to protect your employees, please reach out to your Brio representative and they’ll provide updated educational materials and assist with event-specific messaging to help you communicate with your employees.