Business, Crime

Maryland Department of Labor provides update on unemployment fraud investigation

BALTIMORE, MD—The Maryland Department of Labor on Wednesday provided an update about the department’s ongoing unemployment insurance fraud prevention, detection, and investigation efforts.

“With bad actors continuing to target the important unemployment insurance funds intended to help those in need, our department has maintained heightened security measures to prevent and detect fraudulent activity,” said Labor Secretary Tiffany Robinson. “We have more than doubled the team of specialists reviewing and verifying documentation to ensure that all fraudsters are properly reported, while legitimate claims are reinstated and paid the benefits they deserve.”

Labor officials continue to investigate potentially fraudulent in-state and out-of-state claims. With over 82% of claims flagged and investigated being confirmed as fraudulent, it is critical that the department reviews and verifies documentation manually. Officials added that the numbers are subject to change as the department continues to flag potentially fraudulent claims.

  • Of the 102,406 out-of-state claims that have been identified as being potentially fraudulent, 93,199 (91%) have either not uploaded the verification documentation requested or their documentation has been reviewed and denied.
  • Of the 67,746 in-state claims that have been identified as potentially fraudulent, 46,819 (69.1%) claims have either not uploaded the verification documentation requested or their documentation has been reviewed and denied.
  • There are currently 9,677 (5.7%) in-state and out-of-state potentially fraudulent claims pending manual review and verification by a dedicated team of specialists.

Last month, MD Labor announced the results of the initial fraud investigation that was launched after the State of Maryland uncovered a criminal enterprise that filed tens of thousands of fraudulent unemployment insurance claims in July. The department continues to coordinate its investigation with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

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As of the week ending October 3, MD Labor has paid over $7.3 billion in benefits from the CARES Act, Extended Benefits, and regular unemployment insurance programs. Of the 736,678 complete claims filed since March 9, 672,053 (91.2%) have been processed with 568,823 (77.2%) receiving benefit payments and 103,230 (14.0%) being denied benefits for not meeting state or federal program requirements.

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