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He Made a Minor Mistake Filling Out an Unemployment Form. Then the State Demanded $14,990 From Him.

PROPUBLICA: At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many Americans were not getting the unemployment benefits they were due. Seven months into the economic crisis, in the rush to push out payments, some workers have been paid by mistake and states are insisting that the recipients return the money. Abt’s Austin Nichols emphasizes that now is not the best time for states to be aggressive in collection practices, despite states’ fiscal woes. “If they can get a million dollars back, that’s money they want right now,” he said. “But if the federal government was more forthcoming with grants to states, there would be less pressure for states to recoup the money.” Nichols added that reclaiming overpayments undermines the purpose of unemployment insurance, which is to help families and pump money into the economy.

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