Scammers have taken advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to file millions of false unemployment claims using stolen identities. If you’re an employer in Colorado and received a suspicious unemployment claim for an active employee or someone who never worked for you, immediately submit a fraud report with the Colorado Department of Labor & Employment (CDLE) instead of appealing or rejecting the claim. (And definitely don’t ignore it.)
What should you do if you receive a fraudulent unemployment claim in Colorado? Follow these 4 steps.
- Immediately report the fraudulent unemployment claim to CDLE to hold payment while the investigation is pending. DO NOT reject or appeal the claim.
NOTE: If you’re registered with SIDES to receive unemployment notices, promptly complete requests on claims that you suspect are fraudulent. However, you may ignore notices for fraudulent claims that you receive in the mail or via MyUI+. Responding to those notices automatically generates more paperwork, which may delay the fraud investigation.
- Alert your employees that their personal information may have been stolen and they should submit an Identity Theft Form to CDLE, as well as take other precautions to secure their data from future fraud attempts.
- Raise your employees’ awareness of the uptick in unemployment scams by sharing the CDLE Fraud Prevention website and/or this handout.
- Call Employer Services at (303) 318-9100 with questions related to fraudulent claims. DO NOT call the main UI Call Center to report unemployment fraud.
You can ignore subsequent notices about the claim that you receive after filing the fraud report. Per CDLE, “If you received a Fact Finding Questionnaire for someone who has been a victim of Identity Theft, you do not need to respond to that questionnaire (in MyUI Employer or a paper form). Submitting this [identity theft / fraud reporting] form is sufficient to stop payment to the claim.” However, CDLE still wants employers to respond to job separation notices received via SIDES for information on an employee who is currently working. The agency acknowledges that their automated notification system may cause confusion and are working to resolve the issue.
Colorado Unemployment Fraud Resources
- CDLE Fact Sheet: Identity Theft Q&A for Employers
- CDLE Forms for Reporting Unemployment Fraud (links to employer & employee fraud reporting resources)
- Unemployment Benefits Scam: What it is, What to do (handout for employees)