CHICAGO (CBS) — A La Grange Park woman has an active unemployment claim – and thanks to fraudsters, so does her father, who died more than a year ago.
The woman reached out to CBS 2 about the troubling trend. She told CBS 2’s Tara Molina on Monday that she is worried this will affect her father’s estate.READ MORE: Nearly 18,000 Unemployment Claims Filed In Illinois Last Week Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
“He was a veteran,” Angela Rose said of her dad. “He had some Vietnam war-era-related ailments that later in life caused him to come down with this very rare form of blood cancer.”
Rose’s dad died of that cancer almost a year ago. But a death certificate on file with the state didn’t stop a fraudster from filing for state unemployment benefits in his name.
“It was very surprising and just shocking,” Rose said. “It could have very easily been flagged as fraudulent, just by making some phone calls.”
Rose wants to know how this could possibly happen.
“This is a state agency,” she said. “It sounds to me like these agencies are not communicating with each other – and that is extremely concerning.”
The fact Rose can’t get a hold of the Illinois Department of Employment Security — only making matters worse.
Laid off from her job in sales, Rose said she has a legitimate unemployment claim of her own – so she worries this will somehow affect her or the taxes on her father’s estate.
“This is very, very distressing,” she said.
Molina brought all of this to the state.
We know IDES is dealing with more than 341,000 fraud cases right now, and they are in the process of adding 100 workers just to address the issue.
Even still, how did a claim like this make it through their system, with so much of Rose’s father’s information on record? Are they even checking those records?READ MORE: When Insurance Company Wouldn't Budge On His Claim, He Took Matters Into His Own Hands; Who Monitors Complaints Against Insurers In Illinois?
A spokesperson could not talk about this case specifically, but did say claims filed fraudulently in the names of people who have died are cross-matched with death records and will be stopped before benefits are dispersed. IDES also released the following statement:
“If a person has more than one question or issue with their claim, they don’t need to schedule more than one callback to address each problem individually. They can simply use the callback they receive to address varying issues with their claim.
“In general, when a claim is filed, a Notice of Claim is generated. A filed claim does not always result in a claim determined to be eligible to receive benefits. Claims filed fraudulently in the names of deceased persons are cross-matched with death records and will be stopped before benefits are dispersed.
“Again, in general, verifying and cross-matching information on claims filed can’t occur until after the claim is submitted and information provided.
“IDES is working closely with all our partners – including the Department of Revenue – to protect victims against UI fraud. Generally, if a claim is reported by an identity theft victim as fraudulent, IDES will shut down the claim. Any obligation to return funds to the agency on the fraudulent claim are not the responsibility of the identity theft victim. Further, victims of identity theft will not be held liable for any tax liability arising out of identity theft. If in the event an identity theft victim receives a tax reporting form for IDES funds they did not collect, that form will include instructions how to report the issue to IDES.”
But Rose is still questioning it all.
“Currently, I’m dealing with the estate,” she said. “This is a structural problem within these agencies.”
And while IDES provided those reassurances about any tax liabilities, Rose was still waiting Monday night for the state to address her issue specifically.
Also From CBS Chicago:
- Man Found Shot To Death When Police Conduct Well-Being Check In Washington Park Neighborhood Home
- Woman Finally Gets Job After 10 Months, But Is Now Being Ordered To Pay State $31,000 Back — And Blames Fraud
- Man Charged With Crashing Into Two Cook County Sheriff’s Police Cars On Eisenhower, Attempting To Flee Scene
CBS 2 is committing to Working For Chicago, connecting you every day with the information you or a loved one might need about the jobs market, and helping you remove roadblocks to getting back to work.MORE NEWS: Local Vaccination Sites Begin Administering Pfizer Vaccine To Kids Ages 12 To 15 Thursday; Some Sites Extend Hours
We’ll keep uncovering information every day to help this community get back to work, until the job crisis passes. CBS 2 has several helpful items right here on our website, including a look at specific companies that are hiring, and information from the state about the best way to get through to file for unemployment benefits in the meantime.