The most recent batch of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance payments has been paused due to the possibility of fraudulent claims getting paid out.
The Guam Department of Labor
attempts to batch payments for cleared unemployment claims each Tuesday, but there was too much suspicious activity from the batch meant for July 28.
“This is a federal program. Rules are clear and concrete. People must understand that we don’t have the ability to make judgements. Either you qualify according to federal rules or you don’t. We have no latitude for judgements. I also need to ensure we run one of the cleanest programs in the nation,” said Guam Department of Labor Director David Dell’Isola. “The Office of the Inspector General has projected about $26 billion in fraud across the nation. As much as possible, we are doubling our efforts to make sure our batches are as clean as possible and the money is getting out to our people and not to criminals.”
On top of the fraud measures already in place in the online application, the software vendor for the online application worked with the Guam Labor Department to include new fraud filters to help the people of Guam continue to combat fraud.
GDOL developed several new fraud filters. The application vendor saw other states experience fraud throughout the nation, and they came up with five additional measures on top of what the Department already has in place.
“I don’t want to become like the states where the U.S. Department of Labor clamped down and crippled the processing of unemployment due to the amount of fraud cases getting through the system. We don’t want the feds to think we’re not paying attention to fraud and not taking it seriously,” Dell’Isola said.
(GDOL news release)