What is an overpayment of Unemployment Insurance benefits?
- An overpayment of Unemployment Insurance benefits occurs when the Department determines that you were paid benefits that you were not entitled to receive.
Am I required to re-pay the overpayment?
- Yes. You are required to payback these funds. If you do not repay your overpayment it will be recovered by deductions from future benefits, seizing your tax refund, lottery winnings, or a referral to a collection agency .
- 3. How can I prevent an Unemployment Insurance Overpayment?
- • Report all employment history
• Provide the dates and correct reason as to why you are no longer working for each employer
• Review your “Benefit Rate Decision” to ensure that all employment and wages reported are correct.
• If you return to full-time work while collecting benefits, complete your “Return To Work Form” available on-line at www.dlt.ri.gov/ui/return2Wrk.htm.
• If you are working part-time you must correctly report all wages earned Sunday through Saturday for the week you are requesting benefits.
• You must be able and available for full-time work.
• You must actively apply to at least three (3) places of work and keep a written record of your work search for each week you request benefits.
- 4. When do I notify the department that I returned to work?
- You must notify the department on the first day you return to work. Benefits cannot be paid for a week in which you work full time.
DO NOT WAIT UNTIL YOU RECEIVE YOUR PAYCHECK TO NOTIFY THE DEPARTMENT THAT YOU RETURNED TO WORK.
If I am working part time how do I collect partial benefits?
- If you are working part time you are entitled to collect benefits as long as your gross earnings are less than your benefit rate. You will be asked to report any wages when you certify for your weekly payment.
What are gross wages?
- Gross wages are your earnings before any deductions (taxes, health care ect..) have been taken out..
Can I collect benefits if I am working full time but earning under my benefit rate?
- You can not work full time and collect benefits even if your gross earnings are less than your benefit rate.
Will I receive a notice of overpayment?
- Yes. The Department mails an appealable decision when you have been paid Unemployment Insurance benefits that you were not eligible to receive. The decision shows the amount of the overpayment and interest, if any. It explains why you were overpaid and gives you information about your appeal rights.
Can I appeal an overpayment decision?
- Yes. If you disagree with the determination from the Department, you must file an appeal in writing, within 15 calendar days, including weekends and holidays, from the mailing date indicated on the decision or IT WILL BECOME FINAL. You may file an appeal either by mail, fax or via the Internet (see contact information below). If you file a late appeal, the referee may deny the appeal and the decision of the Director will become final.
Contact Info: Overpayment Unit
PO Box 20380, Cranston, RI 02920-0944
Fax: (401) 462-8514
Internet address: www.dlt.ri.gov/ui
What do I need to include in my letter of appeal?
- In your letter, please provide your name, social security number, current address, the case number you are appealing, and the reason for appealing the decision. Once your appeal is received, you will receive further instructions by mail. Additional information regarding the appeal process is listed in “Your Benefit Rights” provided on-line at www.dlt.ri.gov/ui or by calling the Interactive Voice Response System (tele-serve-) at 401-243-9100 and choosing option 2.
If I am appealing my overpayment do I need to continue to pay back the funds?
- If you are appealing your overpayment decision, you must continue to make restitution. If the decision is ruled in your favor, any money repaid will be returned to you. Rhode Island General Law, Chapters 42-61-7.1 and
44-30.1-1 allows for offset of personal income tax refunds and lottery winnings to repay any UI benefit overpayment.
What is the balance of my overpayment?
- You may contact the overpayment unit at (401) 462-8010 for information on your Unemployment Insurance overpayment. This information will also be provided in your monthly billing notice, which is mailed the first of every month. It is important to update the Department with any address changes.
How do I repay the funds?
- If you are not requesting benefits at the time you receive a notice of overpayment, we are willing to set up a payment plan with you to repay the debt in a reasonable period of time. Customers that are not in receipt of benefits can set-up weekly, biweekly or monthly payment plans.
Do I have to pay interest on the overpayment amount?
- The interest on an overpayment will continue to accrue at 18% per year as long as there is a principal balance.
Can the interest be waived?
- No, the interest cannot be waived.
What does my billing notice mean?
- A billing notice is generated the first of every month to all customers with an outstanding overpayment balance. The billing notice includes the total principal and interest amount due.
Will the 1099g that I receive for tax purposes indicate if I made payments towards the overpayment?
- The 1099 represents benefits paid to you by the department within the last calendar year.
If you have made payments on an overpayment during the last calendar year this will not be reflected on your 1099 and you should advise your accountant for income tax filing purposes.
Where do I mail payments toward my overpayment balance?
- Payments should be mailed to the Department of Labor and Training, Overpayment Unit, at PO Box 20380, Cranston, RI 02920. Accepted payment methods are checks and money orders payable to the Department of Labor and Training.
Can I file a claim for Unemployment Insurance benefits if I have an overpayment?
- You may file a claim for benefits; however, if you are eligible for a claim and requesting weekly payments the Department will deduct the money owed from your weekly Unemployment Insurance benefits. This process is referred to as an offset.
What if I do not repay my overpayment?
- The Department may take the following actions:
• Deduct money owed from your weekly Unemployment Insurance benefits
• Repay the overpayment by withholding your state income tax refunds and/or lottery winnings.
• Refer your overpayment to a collection agency, file a claim against you in court, and record a lien on your property.
- 21. Can the Department of Labor and Training take my Lottery Winnings and State Income Tax Refund to repay the overpayment?
- In order to collect money that is owed to the Department, Sections 42-61-7.1 and 44-30.1-1-10 of the Rhode Island General Laws allow for the recovery of overpayments and interest from an individual’s lottery winnings and state personal income tax refund.
Can I be prosecuted for not reporting my work and earnings while receiving UI benefits?
- Yes, you are committing fraud if you collect Unemployment Insurance benefits by misrepresenting your employment status to the Department. Working while collecting Unemployment Insurance and inaccurately reporting your earnings or telling us you did not work is considered fraud.
Any person who commits fraud will be penalized, and may be arrested and prosecuted.
What if I know or suspect that someone is committing fraud by working and collecting benefits?
- We need your help to keep the Unemployment Insurance system fair for everyone. If you have reason to believe that someone committed Unemployment Insurance fraud, please contact us. You may remain anonymous. You can report Unemployment Insurance fraud three ways:
• Call our Unemployment Insurance Fraud Hotline at (401) 462-1522
• Fax to: (401) 462-8474
• Mail to: RI Department of Labor and Training UI/TDI Fraud Unit, 1511 Pontiac Ave. Cranston, RI 02920.
REMEMBER: DO NOT WAIT UNTIL YOU RECEIVE YOUR PAYCHECK TO NOTIFY THE DEPARTMENT THAT YOU RETURNED TO WORK. YOU CANNOT COLLECT BENEFITS AS SOON AS YOU START WORKING FULL TIME.