Through our Program Integrity Department, the Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance focuses on the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of those who defraud or attempt to defraud the unemployment insurance program.
DUA works with other agencies to prevent UI Fraud
Numerous actions are taken by the UI Program Integrity Department to prevent and detect the fraudulent collecting of benefits. Unemployment Insurance records are matched against records from other agencies:
- Massachusetts Department of Revenue:
- Wage records are compared with records of current UI claims to ensure that claimants who work part-time while collecting UI benefits report those earnings to DUA.
- New Hire report is also matched against UI records to check that claimants who return to work do not continue to collect benefits. It is important for both workers and employers to be aware that eligibility for UI benefits ends on the day an individual starts full-time work.
- State and federal agencies including the Social Security Administration, the state Department of Corrections: These records are also matched to prevent ineligible claimants from collecting unemployment benefits.
Once DUA establishes that a claimant has collected unemployment insurance benefits to which he or she was not entitled, the Program Integrity Department's Recovery Unit aggressively works to recover the overpaid benefits. A variety of collection tools are utilized including criminal and civil prosecutions, the interception of Massachusetts state income tax refunds, mail dunning, and the offset of any future unemployment benefits. Additionally, DUA levies a 12 percent annual interest charge against any outstanding overpayment balance if the claimant was determined to be "at fault".