April 11, 2021

Volume XI, Number 101

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April 09, 2021

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April 08, 2021

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Privacy Tip #270 – What To Do if You Received a Form 1099 for a Fraudulent Unemployment Claim

My phone was ringing this week with inquiries from clients, friends and acquaintances who received a Form 1099 in the mail for an unemployment claim that they did not file, asking what should they do.

The statistics on the successful filing of fraudulent unemployment claims throughout the country in 2020 are staggering. The pandemic created higher unemployment than the country has seen in years, and fraudsters took advantage of federal and state legislation making the filing of an unemployment claim as easy as possible in order to get funds to those in need.

Unfortunately, no good deed goes unpunished, and states were hammered with fraudulent unemployment claims. The State of Washington alone estimates that it lost up to $600 million in fraudulent unemployment claims in 2020.

Some individuals received notice at the time of the filing of a fraudulent unemployment claim made in their name and were able to stop it. If you didn’t receive notice at the time of the filing, and the perpetrator was actually successful in using your personal information to obtain unemployment benefits in your name, you will find out when you get a Form 1099 in the mail for your taxes. What a nightmare.

If this happened to you, here are some ideas and resources that may help.

  • Contact the state agency that issued the 1099 and report the fraud. Usually there is a toll-free number or website at the bottom of the 1099 that you can contact.

  • Keep records of all telephone calls, emails or any other conversations or correspondence you have with the state agency when reporting the fraud.

  • Give all documentation that you have of the fraud, along with your report of the fraud, to your tax preparer.

  • For more information, here are two resources that may be helpful to you.

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Copyright © 2021 Robinson & Cole LLP. All rights reserved.National Law Review, Volume XI, Number 35
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About this Author

Linn F. Freedman, Robinson Cole Law Firm, Cybersecurity and Litigation Law Attorney, Providence
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Linn Freedman practices in data privacy and security law, cybersecurity, and complex litigation. She provides guidance on data privacy and cybersecurity compliance to a full range of public and private clients across all industries, such as construction, education, health care, insurance, manufacturing, real estate, utilities and critical infrastructure, marine, and charitable organizations. Linn is a member of the firm's Business Litigation Group and chairs its Data Privacy + Cybersecurity Team. She is also a member of the Financial Services Cyber-Compliance Team (CyFi ...

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