RI DLT to host workshop to combat Unemployment Insurance fraud

DLT to launch month-long effort to combat fraud

Seats still available for “Preventing Unemployment Insurance Fraud” employer workshop on Nov. 3

This November, the RI Department of Labor and Training is launching a month-long education effort to prevent and combat fraud. Among the department's initiatives is a series of free fraud prevention workshops for RI employers in the areas of unemployment insurance, workers' compensation and temporary disability insurance, and worker misclassification.

Other department-wide initiatives include the creation of an internal cross-divisional work group charged with identifying fraud prevention strategies in unemployment insurance, the addition of a staff member to its existing Income Support Fraud Unit, and the recently publicized collaboration with the State Police in the successful effort to arrest 13 unemployment insurance recipients who unlawfully collected a combined total of more than $130,000 in benefits.

“It is our public responsibility, as a government agency, to be proactive in combating fraud, both among benefit recipients and businesses,” said Director of Labor and Training Charles J. Fogarty. “We believe that one of the most productive ways to combat fraud is to educate businesses on how to report fraud when it occurs and to prevent it from happening in the first place.”

Fogarty explained that the department sought and recently received a $1.1 million federal grant to improve fraud prevention through community outreach; other activities funded by the grant include programs for expediting the wage verification process and for using federal tax offsets to recoup benefit overpayments.

Seats are still available for the first workshop, “Preventing Unemployment Insurance Fraud,” which will be held at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 3 at Showcase Cinemas, 400 Bald Hill Rd., Warwick. During this workshop, unemployment insurance experts plan to discuss the problems of working and collecting, to review recent efforts to improve fraud detection, and to highlight the importance of employer assistance in combating UI fraud. Staffers will also review legislative changes to the taxable wage that take effect January 1st.

To register online for this workshop, which has been scheduled at an off-site location to accommodate anticipated employer demand, employers should visit the RI Department of Labor and Training web site, http://www.dlt.ri.gov/ and click on the “Free Employer Workshops” link.