I found this story, from a Marketplace segment via Carpe Diem, especially irritating. Our company has to pay for a lot of unemployment fraud, so seeing such fraud in action really annoys the hell out of me.
Quick background: Employers pay unemployment taxes generally as a percentage of wages. These taxes are based on a direct relationship with past claims from ex-employees. The more of my ex-employees who make claims, the more premiums I pay.
Since I only have jobs for 6 months a year (it is a seasonable business), employees have the opportunity to file for unemployment the other 6 months. BUT, the rule is generally that you have to be looking for work.
Unfortunately, I have numerous employees who work for me over the summer and take the winter off, but tell the unemployment office they are looking for work so they can collect unemployment anyway. I have had employees call me from Mexico telling me about the great winter vacation they are having on the exact same day I see their names on the roles of those collecting unemployment (and thereby supposedly “looking for work”).
In California, where such behavior is rampant (and where the state unemployment agency has established penalties for employers who even think about asking the state to investigate one of his ex-employees for fraud) I pay over 7% of wages in unemployment taxes, vs. less than 1% in states without such fraudulent behavior.
So, with this background, I am thrilled this guy