I was furloughed and got too many unemployment payments. Here’s how I sent the money back

In April I was furloughed from my job and, at first, struggled to get unemployment benefits. But now, in an ironic twist, my problem isn’t getting paid. It’s getting overpaid.

Explainer (NATIONAL)

Jessica Menton
USA Today
June 8, 2020

Tags: Coronavirus, COVID-19, Unemployment, Unemployment Insurance

Organizations mentioned/involved: Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida


If it’s an accident, it’s technically not fraud and you could potentially fight it to keep the money, according to Laurie Yadoff, an attorney at Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida. But it could be difficult and costly if you need a lawyer, she added, and it eventually catches up with you.

“I wouldn’t be surprised to see more overpayments in the future,” Yadoff says. “Generally, people get the benefit of the doubt. If it wasn’t your fault, it could be waived or you may have to pay it back in installments.”

If you need jobless benefits later, the government may withhold that from you to pay back what you owe. For those on government assistance programs, for instance, if the government deems that there was an intentional violation by giving false information for unemployment, you might not receive food stamps even if you’re eligible, Yadoff cautions.