Unemployment fraud is rising thanks to $600 bonus

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When businesses closed their doors at the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, millions of hardworking people were sent home, furloughed, or worse — laid off.

In response, Congress took dramatic action under the CARES Act to expand unemployment insurance benefits, loosen eligibility requirements, and add a weekly $600 bonus to existing benefits. These policies have since created a perfect storm that discourages people from returning to work and exposes states to more unemployment insurance scams than ever before.

In Las Vegas, Nevada, a man was recently arrested for possession of more than $100,000 in cash and money orders related to fraudulent unemployment benefit cards. A medical practice in Reno, Nevada, began receiving fake unemployment claims from surgeons who were still actively working at the practice.