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Inmates Improperly Collected Unemployment While In Jail

Stack of cash (CBS)

Stack of cash (CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — People in Illinois jails and prisons are not supposed to get unemployment benefits, but some of them are.

More than 1,100 inmates may have improperly collected jobless benefits totaling more than $2 million in recent months, according to The Associated Press.

Nearly all of improper payments were made in the middle of this year and involved county jails.

One Cook County inmate collected almost $43,000, though most inmates were paid far less.

Officials say many of the recipients could face charges, though some may have been paid too little to make prosecution worthwhile.

The state will also garnish tax returns where it can to recover money.

Under the law, people collecting the benefits have to certify every two weeks that they’re still eligible for them, including showing they’re available to work and looking for a job.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bob Conway Reports