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Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency expected significant losses due to fraudulent claims throughout the pandemic. The UIA projected its losses could reach “hundreds of millions” of dollars. However, scammers ultimately duped the agency out of far more than nine figures.
Big Four accounting firm Deloitte released a report on Wednesday that estimated that Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency paid out around $8.5 billion in fraudulent claims since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020.
The 12-page report says the UIA lost as much as $2.8 billion in claims involving imposter fraud and another $5.7 billion to intentional misrepresentation fraud.
Altogether, the agency has paid out a total of $39 billion in unemployment assistance to more than 3 million Michigan residents.
“Our diligence in identifying fraudulent claims proves that we now have effective processes to identify criminals who steal benefits from unemployed workers and Michigan taxpayers,” says UIA Director Julia.
“We will use all the sophisticated tools available to us – and pursue new opportunities and partnerships – to continue aggressively fighting unemployment insurance fraud.”
A lot of fraud going around these days, no?