INDIANAPOLIS – People abusing unemployment, beware—the Marion County Prosecutor’s office and the Department of Workforce Development are watching.
Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry and the DWD announced a partnership Monday to investigate and prosecute fraudulent unemployment claims. The first such cases were filed last week.
Jurisdiction for such cases falls in Marion County because the server that handles unemployment claims is located in Indianapolis. The partnership alleviates some of the jurisdictional problems associated with the benefits system.
“Unemployment insurance is an important safety net, but exploitation of the system and misuse by those who do not qualify cannot be tolerated,” Curry said. “Prosecuting those who fraudulently access these benefits helps protect the system for legitimate claimants and for those businesses that pay into the fund.”
Officials with DWD hope the partnership will discourage people from taking advantage of the system.
“We are pleased to partner with the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office and what this alliance says as a deterrent to would-be lawbreakers,” said Scott B. Sanders, commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. “This gives our agency a significant tool to go after fraud and abuse in the system so these funds are available for Hoosiers truly in need.”
The agencies will work together to investigate fraud cases related to unemployment benefits. If charges are warranted, the prosecutor’s office will file them against people who intentionally falsify information to get unemployment money. In most cases, defendants will face welfare fraud, a class C felony.