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The State is taking extra steps to investigate and prevent fraudulent activity while ensuring that benefits are paid to eligible people as quickly as possible.
If your claim has been cancelled or is in review for possible ID theft, you must confirm your identity through ID.me:
Along with states across the country, the Department has partnered with trusted technology partner ID.me to help bolster current fraud prevention measures and protect unemployment claimants.
If you are required to submit ID verification through ID.me, a notification will be added to your ReEmployME account, and instructions for completion of the process would be found under ‘Correspondences,’ as well as sent via regular mail
Who will be asked to verify their identity?
A claimant may be selected to provide proof of their identity through the secure portal for one of two main reasons:
1. Their claim was reviewed and contains elements that have been seen in confirmed ID Theft claims. To ensure the claim is legitimate and benefits will be paid to the actual claimant, providing proof of their identity through the ID.me portal may be required.
2. Per federal guidance in the Continued Assistance Act of 2020, all new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claims filed after January 31, 2021 are subject to identity verification.
Reporting Identity Theft
If you believe someone else has filed a claim for unemployment benefits in your name, you need to REPORT this to MDOL and then PROTECT your IDENTITY with further steps.
- Report Identity Theft using the MDOL Online Identity Theft Reporting Form. If you are trying to report other types of unemployment fraud, the form can be found below under Reporting other types of unemployment fraud.
- Take steps to protect your identity, bank accounts, credit standing and much more:
- Maine Attorney Generals Office Identity Theft web page
- Federal Trade Commission website to report identity theft and get guidance on actions you should take to protect your identity
- Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud Form to report fraud, waste, abuse, or mismanagement related to any man-made or natural disaster, to include criminal activity related to the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Please use this form to report unemployment fraud other than identity theft, such as an individual providing false information to the Department in order to collect benefits.
Consumer Unemployment Insurance Fraud
Collecting Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits based on providing false, misreported, or unreported information is considered committing UI fraud. If you are filing a claim, reopening a claim, or certifying for UI benefits, you are legally responsible for making sure you follow the requirements set by state law. Examples of UI fraud could include:
To avoid penalties for committing UI fraud:
Employers can take an active role in reducing improper UI benefit payments by providing important information in a timely manner. Employers are required to:
In Maine, UI benefits are funded by employer taxes. Improper payment of UI benefits may result in higher taxes to all employers. UI benefits allow qualified unemployed workers to continue to buy goods and services. An improper payment of UI benefits means that a claim for benefits was paid in error. An improper payment of benefits can result when inaccurate information is provided by the claimant or employer, or when information is not received by the Maine Bureau of Employment Insurance in a timely manner. Once an improper payment is detected, the claimant is notified of an “overpayment.”
The Bureau conducts cross-matches with several data sources. When we find instances of a person collecting benefits he or she is not eligible to receive, an overpayment is established. Overpayments due to fraud are subject to penalties including denial of benefits. The claimant must pay back the money he or she was not entitled to receive. Overpayments can also result in higher taxes for employers whose annual contributions pay for unemployment benefits for their former workers.