The state of Indiana will soon stop providing federal benefits to unemployed residents. This is despite concerns from the Concerned Clergy of Indianapolis, who have filed a lawsuit against Holcomb. Holcomb cited the number of businesses looking for new employees. Please note that material from Scripps Media, Inc. may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. To receive the most recent updates, sign up for our newsletters.
The Baker administration has faced a record backlog of unemployment claims and many unemployed Hoosiers were desperate for benefits. In a rush to make the process work faster, the Department of Unemployment Assistance rushed to issue benefits. The massive workload and ambiguous eligibility rules for federal relief programs slowed the process. Though the department managed to deliver more than $33 billion in federal and state jobless payments for almost 4 million people, the process was plagued with errors.
The backlog of unemployment claims has stalled thousands of cases. According to 13News, the backlog is so large in Indiana that it can take months for claims to get resolved. But the state’s unemployment department has repeatedly said that it pays most claims within 21 days. According to the latest data, there were about 2,576,000 claims that had not yet been resolved by late April. The DWD says that the vast majority of those unresolved cases show signs of fraud. But that explanation doesn’t explain why so many cases stay unresolved for so long.
While there are fewer workers to fill the vacancies, the numbers still represent a snapshot of the state’s economic health. The state’s unemployment rate is still above pre-pandemic levels, though it’s slowly declining. However, this is not to say that jobless claims will continue to remain high. But, the overall trend is encouraging, with the numbers dropping below their pre-pandemic averages.
While the number of American applicants for unemployment benefits has fallen for the third straight week, it is still significantly higher than the pandemic low. Last week’s claim number dropped 16,000 from the previous week, and the four-week average has risen to 179,750 from 177,500. Despite the volatility in the claims number, the unemployment rate has been trending lower in recent weeks due to business reopenings.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is investigating the issue of fraudulent unemployment claims in Indiana. Working with state and local authorities, they are focusing on organized groups. These organizations were not investigating fraudulent unemployment claims before the pandemic began. However, this is changing. When debit cards are mailed out to claimants, they are now under the spotlight. Fraudulent unemployment claims can cost the state billions of dollars.
However, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development refuses to divulge the specific numbers of fraudulent claims. In the meantime, the department does provide information on the number of people who filed unemployment claims in the past year. This information shows that nearly 1.3 million people in the state claimed unemployment benefits in 2018. Over 800,000 of these people were unique. The state’s unemployment office estimates that this money totals $6.9 billion, including federal funds.
The DWD has frozen accounts in several cases of fraudulent claims. However, officials are not yet sure when they will release the report. Until then, victims are waiting for the state to take action. One such victim is Katrina Bates, a disabled U.S. Army veteran, who is unable to collect unemployment in Maine because she is a victim of identity theft. Her efforts have been unsuccessful, but she has not given up hope.
The FBI is currently investigating fraudulent claims in Indiana. While officials won’t talk about specific cases, they said that the agency is working on a multi-state investigation. It has identified hundreds of identities tied to claims out of state. However, it’s not easy to track down all the questions and data. And the FBI is unable to give an exact number of fraudulent claims, but they are focusing on reducing their impact across the state.
In January, California’s Department of Job and Family Services paid out more than $11 billion in fraudulent unemployment assistance. This represents approximately 10 percent of the state’s $114 billion in unemployment payments. Similarly, Ohio’s Department of Job and Family Services recently identified 56,000 fake PUA claims. Despite this, many agencies are still vulnerable to fraud. So, in order to prevent fraud, state officials have implemented a wide-ranging program to combat the problem.
In Indiana unemployment news today, many programs are being eliminated or reduced. The state’s pandemic job program is ending, and so is the enhanced benefits. Thousands of people will lose their benefits when this program ends, and more than half a million Hoosiers will be out of work. The economy isn’t over-staffed, but child care needs are forcing many to reconsider their previous professions. Fortunately, Indiana has started paying back those benefits.
The state of Indiana’s sweeping changes to its unemployment program began last year. The state is returning to the federal program. The state is providing job training and education resources. A statewide training program is under development to help unemployed residents find new careers. But a state has to decide whether or not to participate in the federal program. The decision is a big step for Indiana’s unemployed, but it could lead to further changes for those who need it.
Beyond the Numbers provides monthly data on job growth in Indiana. This analysis is based on data collected by the Census Bureau and the Indiana Employment Security Department. By analyzing job growth, we can predict how many jobs will be created in the state. We also have Indiana’s monthly unemployment rate and the state’s GDP growth. But these figures are only an indication of what’s to come. In the meantime, you can prepare yourself for the worst by reading the latest unemployment news today.
If you’re unemployed in Indiana, you’ve probably been wondering if you should apply for benefits before the expiration date. In case you haven’t, now is the time to do so! The unemployment insurance program’s expiration date is 2021, so you should be sure to apply before the expiration date to ensure you receive the maximum amount of benefits. To apply, you must be at least 16 years old and have not lost your job due to the recent pandemic.
The federal enhanced unemployment program will expire on September 6th, 2021. The program consists of PUA, PEUC, $300 FPUC, $100 MEUC, and back payments. While claimants will still receive traditional state unemployment benefits, these will not be enough to keep them financially stable. Moreover, the maximum benefits under traditional state unemployment programs are hardly enough to survive. Fortunately, some claimant advocacy groups have already filed lawsuits against state governments and UI departments, and some have won injunctions preventing the expiration of this benefit program.
While the pandemic has helped some states, others are not so lucky. Those in Indiana are among the states that have benefited from pandemic unemployment programs. Those in Maryland won’t be able to receive their benefits until 2021, because the state court issued a preliminary injunction against the program’s expiration date. Meanwhile, in Texas, Ohio, and Oklahoma, cases have moved through the state court system.
A new court ruling on this issue ruled against Holcomb, a Republican governor who has been pushing to remove Indiana from federal programs before the Sept. 6 deadline. In a nutshell, the ruling means the state will have to continue paying its unemployed citizens $300 weekly in benefits and remain in other programs that have extended unemployment benefits during the COVID-19 pandemic. The judge’s ruling may encourage plaintiffs in the future.
In addition to the new FPUC payment, another extension of the LWA program is in the works. The extension will cover an additional 11 weeks of retroactive benefits until March 14, 2021. The FPUC payment is currently $300 and there is a $1 minimum threshold. The LWA program has also been extended to provide additional retroactive coverage. A regular update of this article will address any new issues relating to the payment.