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Unemployment Insurance Quality Control
Overpayments
 
You are overpaid on your claim if you receive benefits you should not have. The error may have been our fault or yours. If you are overpaid, we will ask you to pay the money back. We always send a decision to you explaining what the reason for overpayment was and what it means to you. Some overpayment causes are:
  • Earnings reported incorrectly on a weekly claim filing,
  • Unreported or incorrectly reported retirement pay,
  • Administrative (or higher level) decision reversed on appeal;
  • Payment made before the Employment Department learns of an "issue" on your claim;
  • You misrepresented or withheld information in order to receive benefits you weren’t eligible to receive; or
  • Your benefit amount changed due to a correction in base year wages. If your benefit amount goes down, you will be overpaid.
 
If you caused the overpayment, you are required to pay back the full amount. Do not delay repayment; we use all legal collection methods, including wage garnishment and interception of state income tax refunds.
 
If you did not cause the overpayment, we will ask you to pay the money back or we will deduct it from benefits you become eligible to receive in the future. If you return to work, we encourage you to repay as soon as possible. That way, your benefits will not be affected if you become unemployed in the future and have no income. Always notify us if your benefit payment is the wrong amount.
 
Do not stop calling the Weekly Claim Line just because you receive notice of an overpayment; we can use payable benefits to pay back the money you owe.
 
Overpayment decisions also have appeal rights; however, if an overpayment is based on a earlier eligibility decision, the earlier decision that caused the overpayment is final. Appealing the overpayment decision will not change the first decision.  Make sure you read all mail from us and act on any decision you don’t agree with.
 

Underpayments
 
You are underpaid on your claim if your benefit payment is less than the amount you should receive. This can happen because your employer paid you less than the amount you reported when you claimed a week. If you discover you earned less than what you reported, call your UI Center. We may be able to pay you more benefits.
 
If you are underpaid for other reasons, such the discover of additional base year wages that increase your weekly benefit amount, we will adjust your benefits and pay the additional amount.
 
Contact your UI Center if your benefit payment was reduced because you reported too much in earnings.
 

The Quality Control Program
The Employment Department conducts a Quality Control program. Claims are randomly selected to determine the accuracy of benefit payments. The random selection comes from the list of claimants who received UI during the preceding week. If selected, we notify you that particular week is being audited. We ask you to complete a detailed questionnaire. An interviewer may contact you to review your case. Failure to participate in the audit will result in denial of benefits.
 
If selected for an audit, you can help us by:
  • Keeping accurate records of any work you do and money you earn during each week for which you claim benefits;
  • Keeping detailed records of your work search activities; and
  • Providing an accurate record of your work history, including dates of employment, reason for job separations, wages earned, etc.
 
It is your responsibility to maintain accurate records.

Unemployment Insurance Fraud

 
The Employment Department has a variety of methods to audit the accuracy of unemployment insurance payments.  Employers are contacted to confirm reasons for separations.  After the end of each calendar quarter, employers report the names, Social Security numbers and earnings of all their employees to the Employment Department, as required by law.  Our computer system uses this wage information to find out if anyone worked while claiming benefits. Our computer system also checks wages earned in other states against Oregon benefits paid to ensure people reported their earnings correctly.
 
Report your work and earnings correctly. Tell us about anything that keeps you from working or looking for work. You can be prosecuted if you knowingly make a false statement or fail to disclose information to get benefits. If found guilty, you could be fined or jailed or both.  At the very least, you will be required to pay back the money. You will also have to report for up to 52 unpaid penalty weeks. During each penalty week, you must be unemployed and eligible for benefits in every way. This penalty remains in effect until you claim all the penalty weeks or five years have passed.
 

Reporting UI Fraud
 
If you have information about unemployment fraud, please call 1-877-668-3204.  Or, you may send an e-mail to the Fraud Hotline.  We review all tips that we receive, regardless of how much information you provide.  However the more details you can give when reporting unemployment fraud, the better it will help us in our investigation. 
 
In addition to the name of the individual, and the fraudulent activity they are doing, providing details such as their address, their age or date of birth, and/or their social security number will help us better identify the person in our claim records. 
 
If you are reporting someone working while receiving benefits, providing the name and address of the employer as well as approximately how long the individual has been working for them, in addition to the information above, will help us in reviewing claim and wage records and determining fraudulent activity. 
 
We keep the information you provide confidential, and you can ask to remain anonymous when reporting UI fraud.  However, due to confidentiality laws, we are unable to provide the results of any investigation based on the information you provide.  We appreciate your help.