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If you have information that an unemployment benefits claim was filed using a stolen identity (ID), report the ID fraud claim on TWC’s online portal. Continue reading for more information.

Report ID Fraud
 

On this page:

Overview

Unemployment benefits identity (ID) fraud happens when criminals use other people's information to illegally receive unemployment benefits.

  • “Unemployment ID Fraud” is when criminals use another person’s personal information, like their name and Social Security number, to file a claim for unemployment benefits. 
  • “Claim Hijacking or Claim/Account Takeover” is when criminals use another person’s personal information to illegally log into a person’s unemployment account and steal the unemployment benefit payments intended for the real claimant. 

Individuals who are the targets of unemployment ID fraud have usually had their personal information exposed somewhere other than TWC. Take steps to secure your identity online by practicing Internet security best practices. Treat your TWC account and all accounts like you would your bank account. Find information on how to report suspected ID fraud on an unemployment claim and what steps you should take if your identity has been stolen.

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Warnings Signs of Unemployment Identity Fraud

Here are some signs that you may be a victim of unemployment identity fraud:

  • TWC (or another government agency) sends you mail about an unemployment claim or payment and you did not recently file for unemployment benefits. This could include receiving requests to verify your identity for unemployment benefits, receiving letters notifying you of an unemployment claim filed in your name, or receiving unexpected payments or debit cards. The mail could be from any state even if you never lived or worked there.
  • You receive a 1099-G tax form reflecting unemployment benefits you weren't expecting and did not receive. The 1099-G may show unemployment benefits you did not receive, or more benefits than you received, or the 1099-G may be from a state where you haven’t lived, worked, or filed for benefits.
  • While you are still employed, you receive a notice from your employer indicating that they received a request for information about an unemployment claim in your name.
  • While you are receiving unemployment, you learn your payments were sent somewhere else although you did not authorize a change to your payment method. “Claim Hijacking” or “Claim/Account Takeover” occurs when someone illegally accesses your unemployment account and redirects your benefits to a different bank account or address.

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How to Report ID Fraud on an Unemployment Claim

If someone filed a claim (in Texas) using your Social Security number (SSN), report the ID fraud on TWC’s secure online fraud portal. If someone filed an unemployment ID fraud claim in other state, you must report the fraud to the state where it occurred.

Under “Type of submission,” select: 

  • Did not file the UI claim (Select this option to report that someone/an imposter filed an unemployment claim using your SSN.)
  • Did not file the UI claim but now need to (Select this option to report that someone/an imposter filed an unemployment claim using your SSN and you now need to file a claim.) 

Provide your name, SSN, and contact information. Upload copies of any claim documents you may have received from TWC, along with a copy of your driver license, which TWC uses to verify your identity. 

Submit the ID fraud report only once. Individuals who report ID fraud do not always receive a call, email, or letter in response to the information provided. TWC will only contact you if we need more information.   

If your employer received a claim notice from TWC indicating a claim was filed using your SSN and you did not file the claim, tell your employer to respond to the notice and indicate the claim was filed by an imposter.

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What To Do If You Receive a Notice to Verify Your Identity Through ID.me

If you filed an unemployment claim and received a letter from TWC with instructions to verify your identity using ID.me, then you are required to verify your identity so we can validate your claim.

If you did NOT file an unemployment claim and received a letter to verify your identity, please report the ID fraud claim on TWC's online fraud portal.

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What To Do If You Receive an Overpayment Notice

If you receive an overpayment notice for an unemployment claim that you did not file, you should report the ID fraud claim on TWC’s online fraud portal

Once TWC confirms that a claim was fraudulently filed by an imposter, the person named on the claim is not responsible for any overpayment and the employer’s tax rate or reimbursement is not affected. Once unemployment ID fraud is confirmed, any future overpayment statements will be suspended. You may continue to receive overpayment notices while the investigation is ongoing. 

You do not need to respond to these statements if you've already reported the ID fraud using the fraud submission portal.

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What To Do If You Receive a Debit Card or Check

If you received a debit card or check payment for an unemployment benefits claim that you did not file, you should report the ID fraud claim on TWC’s online portal.

If you received a debit card from US Bank for an unemployment claim you did not file, you should destroy the card. Do not activate the debit card account.

If you received a check(s) for a claim you did not file, you should return the check(s) to TWC, along with an explanation as to why the check(s) is being returned. See example explanation below:

I am returning this check(s) to TWC because I did not file the claim for unemployment benefits. Full name on the claim: <insert full name shown on the claim>

Social Security number on the claim: <insert full SSN or the last 4 digits of the SSN>

Return checks to:

TWC Revenue & Trust Management
P.O. Box 149352
Austin, TX 78714-9352

Do not include the name on the claim or any part of a Social Security number on the outside of the envelope.

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How Employers Can Report ID Fraud on an Unemployment Claim

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 fraudulently filed by an imposter. See Responding to a Notice of Application for instructions on responding to a claim notice. 

If your employee receives a notice for an unemployment claim they did not file, advise your employee to report the ID fraud claim using TWC’s online fraud portal

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What To Do If You Received an IRS Form 1099-G

TWC issues Form 1099-G to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and claimants who received payments on an unemployment claim. If you received a Form 1099-G for unemployment benefits on a claim you did not file, you should report it immediately using TWC's online fraud portal.

Unemployment Identity Fraud and Your IRS Tax Return

When you file your federal income tax return, you must report income you received, but you should not report income that you did not receive. When you file your income taxes, only include income you actually received. Do not wait to receive a corrected 1099-G to file your taxes. Once TWC has that confirmed an unemployment claim was fraudulently filed, TWC will send a corrected report directly to the IRS. Refer to the Identity Theft and Unemployment Benefits page on IRS.gov for updates and additional tax filing information.

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Additional Suggestions for Victims of Unemployment ID Fraud

In addition to reporting ID fraud to TWC, victims of unemployment ID fraud are advised to take the following actions:

  1. Check your credit report for suspicious activity or unauthorized lines of credit opened. 
  2. Contact one of the three credit reporting agencies listed below and ask that a free fraud alert be placed on your credit report. If needed, ask to have your credit account frozen. Also request a free credit report. You only need to contact one of the three agencies because the law requires the agency to call to contact the other two.
  3. If your bank or credit union account was compromised, contact the fraud department of each institution. Report the identity theft and, if needed, ask them to close or freeze the compromised account. If your ATM card was compromised, contact your financial institution and request a new card.
  4. If unauthorized charges appear on your legitimate credit cards, cancel the cards and request replacement cards with new account numbers. If an unauthorized card was opened using your ID, cancel the cards and close the accounts.
  5. Report unemployment ID fraud that occurred after March 2020 to the U.S. Department of Justice's National Center for Disaster Fraud. The National Center for Disaster Fraud will notify the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Inspector General, which is the primary agency responsible for investigating unemployment fraud. Your report can help protect others from fraud. 

Additional Steps You Can Take: 

  1. Contact the police department in the city in which you reside and get an incident report and number. 
  2. Consult the Federal Trade Commission website to report the ID theft and for prevention tips and resources.
  3. Contact the Social Security Administration office. See Identity Theft and Your Social Security Number for more details. 

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How to Report Identity Theft to Social Security Administration

Your Social Security Number opens doors to so much of your personal and financial information that criminals try to steal it to avoid paying Social Security taxes, to work in the United States, to steal money from your bank account or to engage in other illegal activities.

If you believe someone has stolen your identity or Social Security Number, contact the Social Security Administration (SSA):

  • Visit www.ssa.gov and type "identity theft" in the search box
  • Call: 800-269-0271
    Fax: 410-597-0118
  • Social Security Fraud Hotline
    PO Box 17785
    Baltimore, MD 21235

To verify the accuracy of the earnings reported on your SSN or to request a copy of your Social Security Statement, you may call SSA at 800-772-1213.

For more information, view the Social Security Administration’s Identity Theft and Your Social Security Number.

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