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This entry was published on 2021-07-30
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SECTION 594
Reduction and recovery of benefits and penalties for wilful false statement
Labor (LAB) CHAPTER 31, ARTICLE 18, TITLE 7
§ 594. Reduction and recovery of benefits and penalties for wilful
false statement. * (1) A claimant who has wilfully made a false
statement or representation to obtain any benefit under the provisions
of this article shall forfeit benefits for at least the first four but
not more than the first eighty effective days following discovery of
such offense for which he or she otherwise would have been entitled to
receive benefits. Such penalty shall apply only once with respect to
each such offense.

* NB Effective until April 1, 2022 or 30 days after the commissioner
of labor certifies that the department of labor has an information
technology system capable of accomodating these amendments, whichever is
earlier

* (1) A claimant who has wilfully made a false statement or
representation to obtain any benefit under the provisions of this
article shall forfeit benefits for at least the first one but not more
than the first twenty effective weeks following discovery of such
offense for which he or she otherwise would have been entitled to
receive benefits. Such penalty shall apply only once with respect to
each such offense.

* NB Effective April 1, 2022 or 30 days after the commissioner of
labor certifies that the department of labor has an information
technology system capable of accomodating these amendments, whichever is
earlier

* (2) For the purpose of subdivision four of section five hundred
ninety of this article, the claimant shall be deemed to have received
benefits for such forfeited effective days.

* NB Effective until April 1, 2022 or 30 days after the commissioner
of labor certifies that the department of labor has an information
technology system capable of accomodating these amendments, whichever is
earlier

* (2) For the purpose of subdivision four of section five hundred
ninety of this article, the claimant shall be deemed to have received
benefits for such forfeited effective weeks.

* NB Effective April 1, 2022 or 30 days after the commissioner of
labor certifies that the department of labor has an information
technology system capable of accomodating these amendments, whichever is
earlier

(3) The penalty provided in this section shall not be confined to a
single benefit year but shall no longer apply in whole or in part after
the expiration of two years from the date of the final determination.
Such two-year period shall be tolled during the time period a claimant
has an appeal pending.

(4) A claimant shall refund all moneys received because of such false
statement or representation and pay a civil penalty in an amount equal
to the greater of one hundred dollars or fifteen percent of the total
overpaid benefits determined pursuant to this section. The penalties
collected hereunder shall be deposited in the fund. The penalties
assessed under this subdivision shall apply and be assessed for any
benefits paid under federal unemployment and extended unemployment
programs administered by the department in the same manner as provided
in this article. The penalties in this section shall be in addition to
any penalties imposed under this chapter or any state or federal
criminal statute. No penalties or interest assessed pursuant to this
section may be deducted or withheld from benefits.

(5) (a) Upon a determination based upon a willful false statement or
representation becoming final through exhaustion of appeal rights or
failure to exhaust hearing rights, the commissioner may recover the
amount found to be due by commencing a civil action, or by filing with
the county clerk of the county where the claimant resides the final
determination of the commissioner or the final decision by an
administrative law judge, the appeal board, or a court containing the
amount found to be due including interest and civil penalty. The
commissioner may only make such a filing with the county clerk when:

(i) The claimant has responded to requests for information prior to a
determination and such requests for information notified the claimant of
his or her rights to a fair hearing as well as the potential
consequences of an investigation and final determination under this
section including the notice required by subparagraph (iii) of paragraph
(b) of this subdivision. Additionally if the claimant requested a fair
hearing or appeal subsequent to a determination, that the claimant was
present either in person or through electronic means at such hearing, or
subsequent appeal from which a final determination was rendered;

(ii) The commissioner has made efforts to collect on such final
determination; and

(iii) The commissioner has sent a notice, in accordance with paragraph
(b) of this subdivision, of intent to docket such final determination by
first class or certified mail, return receipt requested, ten days prior
to the docketing of such determination.

(b) The notice required in subparagraph (iii) of paragraph (a) of this
subdivision shall include the following:

(i) That the commissioner intends to docket a final determination
against such claimant as a judgment;

(ii) The total amount to be docketed; and

(iii) Conspicuous language that reads as follows: "Once entered, a
judgment is good and can be used against you for twenty years, and your
money, including a portion of your paycheck and/or bank account, may be
taken. Also, a judgment will hurt your credit score and can affect your
ability to rent a home, find a job, or take out a loan."