December 18, 2016

93% of Michigan unemployment fraud accusations found to be false

Boing Boing - aaUnder the cruel austerity of Michigan governor Rick Snyder any claims for unemployment insurance were vigorously investigated, with the state operating on the assumption that any worker who claimed a benefit was probably committing fraud.

For years, Michigan workers have disputed thousands and thousands of accusations of insurance fraud -- accusations generated by opaque, unauditable software -- facing the loss of benefits and fines of $100,000, and spending fortunes appealing the accusations in court, this money being deducted from their federal and state tax-refunds. Many of the falsely accused were forced into bankruptcy.

Michigan's automated fraud-accusation system operated without human oversight, automatically cutting off workers without their cases being reviewed by human beings.

This week, the Michigan unemployment insurance agency released its own audit into the system, and found that 93% of its fraud accusations were false, accounting for more than 20,000 actions against innocent Michigan workers over the two years from 2013-2015.

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