Queens Unemployment Fraud Lawyers
An unemployment fraud charge can have serious ramifications, including fines and jailtime. If you’re facing an unemployment fraud case, the severity will vary with the amount that you’re alleged to have taken fraudulently, but an experienced Queens unemployment fraud lawyer can make a big difference for you.
This guide will cover how unemployment in New York works, what would be considered unemployment fraud and how you could fight fraud charges.
The New York Unemployment Process
The New York Department of Labor issues unemployment insurance benefits to residents who are out of work, provided they meet certain requirements. To quality for unemployment, you must have worked a minimum amount and lost your job through no fault of your own.
To get unemployment insurance benefits, you need to apply with the Department of Labor and explain why you no longer have a job. The Department of Labor may check with your previous employer to verify the information you provide. After your application gets approved, you’re responsible for submitting claim forms, either online or by mail, to the Department of Labor every two weeks. That claim form will ask you several questions related to your work situation, including if you could have worked during the periods the claims form covers, if you have been actively looking for work, if you worked during that period and, if so, the amount of money you made from that work.
What Constitutes Unemployment Fraud
The crime of unemployment fraud can apply to many different actions, but what it all boils down to is using false info to get unemployment benefits. There are several stages during the unemployment process when you could do this.
There’s the application process for unemployment benefits. Examples of unemployment fraud here would include lying about how you lost your job, such as claiming to have been laid off when you actually were fired for not showing up to work multiple times, or lying about your pay to obtain a higher benefit amount.
There’s also the claim forms you fill out to get your unemployment benefits. Any false info on these is also unemployment fraud. One of the most common examples with claim forms is working without recording it on the claim form, especially if it’s under-the-table work. You’re supposed to record how much money you made so that the Department of Labor can deduct that amount from your benefits.
As a condition of your unemployment benefits, you must be ready to work and actively searching for it. Even though you typically don’t need to send in records of your job searches, you are supposed to record them, as the Department of Labor may ask for them. Stating on your claim form that you were looking for work when you really weren’t or that you could have worked when you weren’t able to are both instances of fraud.
Defending Yourself Against Unemployment Fraud Charges
If you’re convicted of unemployment fraud, you could be in line for some severe penalties. You’ll need to pay back those benefits with extra fines attached, and there could also be a jail sentence, although this is less likely. You may not be able to ever apply for unemployment benefits again.
The smart move here is to hire a Queens unemployment fraud lawyer who can evaluate your case and recommend the best defense strategy. We have lawyers available to start working on your case immediately. They can analyze any evidence against you, consider plea deal options and represent you in court, if it comes to that.
May 17, 2018
Spodek Law is a great firm. They are super pragmatic