Reporting Fraud

How to Report Unemployment Benefits Identity Theft

Unemployment benefits identity (ID) theft is a serious problems that can potentially delay out-of-work Texans from getting the benefits they need and betray the taxpayers of Texas. Fortunately, TWC has strong protections to identify, track, and lock down ID theft attempts, protecting Texas workers and the integrity of the Texas unemployment system. In most cases, we stop the fraud before a single dollar in benefits is paid out. If you have information that an unemployment claim was filed using a stolen identity, you should report the ID theft claim on TWC's online fraud portal. 

Employers

Employers may receive a claim notice from TWC requesting information on a claim. If you receive a notice for an employee who is still working, or for a person who never worked for you, please respond to the notice immediately and indicate the claim was filed by an imposter. 
If your employee receives a notice for an unemployment claim they did not file, advise your employee to report the ID theft claim using TWC’s online fraud portal.

Individuals

If someone filed a claim using your Social Security number (SSN), you should report the ID theft claim on TWC’s secure online fraud portal. 

You can help prevent fraud and protect your identity. If you are contacted about your benefits, remember that a TWC specialist will NEVER ask for:

  • Credit card information
  • Full bank account number
  • A fee or payment to assist with filing for unemployment benefits

Individuals who are the targets of identity theft have usually had their information exposed somewhere other than TWC.Treat your TWC account and all accounts like you would your bank account. Take steps to secure your identity online by practicing Internet security best practices.

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How to Report Fraud In a TWC Program

The Texas Workforce Commission is authorized by the Texas Labor Code to investigate allegations of fraud, waste, and program abuse involving TWC programs. See TWC Programs, Definitions and Examples of Reportable Violations for examples.

To report suspected fraud, waste, or abuse involving TWC programs, that is not related to identity theft, use one of the following methods: 

  • TWC’s secure online fraud portal – Submit documents or upload a brief summary document describing the alleged program fraud. 
  • TWC.fraud@twc.texas.gov – Use only if unable to submit using the online portal. Submit a brief summary describing the alleged fraud. Do not use to report identity theft. See Warning, below. 
  • Fraud Hotline at 800-252-3642 – Use only to submit an anonymous report. Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Information must be specific as possible. Do not use to report identity theft. 

WARNING: Once you send your email message and TWC receives it, the message becomes an official state record. Included as part of the message is the identifier that is inserted by your internet service provider, which cannot be removed from the record pursuant to Texas Penal Code Chapter 37. The accused has a special right of access under the Public Information Act to review the official record and/or obtain copies of the record. Therefore, if you wish to remain anonymous, DO NOT contact TWC via email. To remain anonymous, report any allegations by calling the TWC Fraud Hotline at 800-252-3642. For Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), call Relay Texas at: 711 (Voice).

You may also report suspected fraud, waste and abuse involving state resources directly to the State Auditor's Office (SAO). You may contact the SAO through the SAO Hotline website or by calling the SAO Hotline at 800-TX-AUDIT (800) 892-8348.

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TWC Programs, Definitions, and Examples of Reportable Violations

TWC is authorized by the Texas Labor Code to investigate allegations of fraud, waste and program abuse involving TWC programs. Individuals can report suspected fraud, waste, or program abuse in any of the following programs:

  • Adult Education & Literacy
  • Apprenticeship
  • Career Schools & Colleges
  • Child Care Services
  • Choices
  • Civil Rights
  • Foreign Labor Certification
  • Labor Law
  • Labor Market & Career Information
  • Noncustodial Parent Choices
  • Rapid Reemployment Services
  • Self Sufficiency
  • Senior Community Services Employment Program
  • Skills Development
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP & ET) Employment & Training
  • The Criss Cole Rehabilitation Center
  • The Independent Living Services Program for Older Individuals Who Are Blind
  • The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program
  • Trade Adjustment Assistance
  • Unemployment Insurance Benefits
  • Unemployment Insurance Tax
  • Vocational Rehabilitation Services
  • Wagner-Peyser Employment Services
  • Workforce Investment Opportunity Act (WIOA) Adult, Dislocated Workers and Youth Employment Training and Services
  • WorkInTexas.com
  • Work Opportunity Tax Credit

Fraud is a willful act or course of deception, or an intentional concealment, omission, or perversion of truth, with the intent to obtain a material benefit or service for that person or another person, for which the person may not be eligible. 

Waste is any practice that a reasonably prudent person would deem careless or that would allow inefficient use of resources, items or services. Waste includes incurring unnecessary costs because of inefficient or ineffective practices, systems, or controls.

Abuse is the intentional, wrongful or improper use or destruction of state resources, or a seriously improper practice that does not involve prosecutable fraud.  Abuse may include misapplication or misuse of public resources.

Theft is the unlawful appropriation of property with the intent to deprive the owner of that property.

Reportable violations include, but are not limited to, the following examples:

  • Obtaining unemployment insurance benefits by misrepresentation
  • Obtaining child care benefits by misrepresentation
  • Improper tax avoidance by nondisclosure or misrepresentation of facts
  • Authorizing an improper claim for others
  • Authorizing ineligible participation in TWC programs
  • Authorizing payments to ineligible claimants/clients
  • Accessing agency information (e.g., wage records) for non-business reasons.
  • Conflict of interest issues
  • Extorting money or accepting favors from contractors, clients, or vendors
  • Failing to follow applicable rules, regulations, policies, procedures, and laws
  • Improperly disclosing information
  • Misusing State-owned property (computers, equipment, telephones, etc.)
  • Nondisclosure of material facts
  • Overstating travel expense reimbursement claims
  • Receiving kickbacks from contractors, clients, or vendors
  • Using State supplies for personal use
  • Using State telephone lines for personal calls to avoid long distance charges
  • Using unauthorized computer programs on State-owned computers
  • Installation of State-owned computer software on home computers
  • Violating contract or grant procedures
  • Falsifying financial records to conceal theft of money or property
  • Intentionally misrepresenting the costs of goods or services provided

TWC may refer investigative results to the appropriate district or county attorney. TWC may also provide this information to the United States Department of Labor and the United States Department of Justice or other federal or state agencies.

Any documents you provide to TWC, including emails and faxes, as well as any information transcribed by TWC staff based on verbal communication with you, become part of official agency records upon receipt by TWC (Government Code 441, V.T.C.A. and the Texas Workforce Records Retention Schedule approved by the State Library and Archives Commission on January 4, 2002, as amended, as well as the Public Information Act, Government Code, Chapter 552, V.T.C.A.) These records cannot be altered or destroyed (Texas Penal Code, Chapter 37, V.T.C.A.), except as permitted by TWC's Records Retention Schedule.

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Public Disclosure of Fraud Report

Generally, information received by TWC through fraud reports or investigations is not subject to disclosure to the public, unless required by law. However, the Public Information Act, Government Code, Chapter 552, V.T.C.A., provides the person accused with a right to review the agency records, as well as the ability to obtain copies of these records. Copies of agency records may also be obtained by subpoena.

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