Confronting Identity Theft. A Nebraska Department of Labor Best Practice Presented by Becky Buchanan UI Benefits Program Supervisor Interstate Program Coordinator Nebraska Department of Labor. LEGAL RATIONALE.
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A Nebraska Department of Labor
Presented by Becky Buchanan
UI Benefits Program Supervisor
Interstate Program Coordinator
Nebraska Department of Labor
QUESTION: “What’s wrong with paying benefits to claimants who are not the rightful, legal owners of the SSN? They still earned the wage credits, right?”
If we knowingly turn a blind eye to ID Theft, we are facilitating a crime. Using false identifying information for monetary gain is a crime in Nebraska and probably all other states. Collecting UI benefit payments is a monetary gain and it is a crime if the identifying information does not lawfully belong to the claimant.
Neb. Rev. Stat. §28-639
A person commits the crime of identity theft if he or she knowingly takes, purchases, manufactures, records, possesses, or uses any personal identifying information or entity identifying information of another person or entity without the consent of that other person or entity or creates personal identifying information for a fictional person or entity, with the intent to obtain or use the other person's or entity's identity for any unlawful purpose or to cause loss to a person or entity whether or not the person or entity actually suffers any economic loss as a result of the offense, or with the intent to obtain or continue employment or with the intent to gain a pecuniary benefit for himself, herself, or another.
CONSISTED OF MANAGEMENT FROM:
NOT OVERLY TIME CONSUMING
Adjudicators and Claims Specialists should report all cases of identity theft to their supervisors, who will then notify the Benefits Section (Wage Investigations).
CLAIMANT OR CALLER REPORTS IDENTITY HAS BEEN STOLEN:
Caller should be told to file a police report and notify the Federal Trade Commission.
Phone: 1-877-ID-THEFT (438-4338) TTY: 1-866-653-4261
By Mail: Identity Theft Clearinghouse, Federal Trade Commission, Washington, DC 20580
(UPDATE: IBIQ names has really helped expedite this process. Screenshots follow. 36 states have this capability! Several other states are still working on it.)
SEE NEXT SLIDE FOR EXAMPLE:
The MOS– Misuse of Social Security Number issueMOS090 - Not a formal determination and resolved without a tally/count.This is an allowed issue that internally notifies staff to not add the employment in the future. Communicates to staff that the issue has already been investigated. This also prevents duplicate work, erroneous overpayments, and unnecessary IB4s.
The supervisor will often send me an “MOS” email, summarizing the situation . The Benefits section then sets the MOS issue and proceeds to investigate.
Information received by the Nebraska Department of Labor indicates a possible misrepresentation of identity. As a result, we must verify your identity before paying unemployment benefits. We require that you mail copies of the following documents by DUE DATE.
NOTE: All documents must be legible and clear.
If you do not provide the requested documentation by the due date listed in the first paragraph of this letter, you have two additional business days to contact this office to explain. If you do not report or respond to this notice, you may be disqualified from receiving Unemployment Insurance Benefits payments.
Please mail your documentation to: - etc.
The Nebraska Department of Labor is investigating the identity of claimant FIRST NAME LAST NAME (SSN: xxx-xx-xxxx). Information received by our department indicates a possible misrepresentation of identity. We must reconcile this conflict before paying unemployment benefits to the person named above.
Our records indicate your company employed the claimant from DATE to DATE. Please provide the following identification documents so that we may verify this claimant’s identity.
The Nebraska Employment Security Law gives Department of Labor employees statutory authority to request this information. The legal citation is provided at the bottom of this page. Thank you for your cooperation.
For statutory authority – next slide
Nebraska Revised Statute 48-612
Employers; records and reports required; privileged communications; violation; penalty.
Each employer, whether or not subject to the Employment Security Law, shall keep true and accurate work records containing such information as the Commissioner of Labor may prescribe. Such records shall be open to inspection and be subject to being copied by the commissioner or his or her authorized representatives at any reasonable time and as often as may be necessary. The commissioner and the appeal tribunal may require from any such employer any sworn or unsworn reports, with respect to persons employed by it, which he, she, or it deems necessary for the effective administration of such law. Except as otherwise provided in section 48-612.01, information thus obtained or obtained from any individual pursuant to the administration of such law shall be held confidential.
If a caller states he/she never filed a claim and does not owe any overpayment, the claims taker should notify a supervisor, who will then notify Benefit Payment Control (BPC). The caller should be advised to report the identity theft to the FTC as well as to the police. The caller should be advised to obtain a police report. BPC will provide further instruction regarding the possibility of non-recoupment of the overpayment. Nebraska does not have a waiver of overpayment provision in its Employment Security law.
* Nebraska does not have a “waiver” provision for overpayment. Only non-recoupment.
In limited circumstances, an in-person verification of identity may be necessary. The Benefits Program Supervisor will request assistance from UI Tax or BPCU field reps. The wage investigation unit will handle the correspondence to the claimant requesting an in-person report, via a BEN-83. If the claimant fails to comply, the claim will be disqualified from BYB to BYE on the basis of probable misuse of SSN.
In the absence of training dollars for staff, use available local resources
UI Program Supervisor/Interstate Program Coordinator
Nebraska Department of Labor – UI Benefits Section