Unemployment Compensation Scam

JOINT PRESS RELEASE FROM:District Attorney Stephanie L. Vettenburg-Shaffer & City Of Bradford Police Chief Michael Ward

Re:  Unemployment Compensation Scams

Dated:  July 13, 2021

Area residents have become victim to fraudulent unemployment compensation scams at an alarming rate.  We have seen a large number of local people report they have either received an  unemployment check in the mail when they have not applied for benefits or have been notified that someone has applied for – and has received- unemployment compensation in their name.

If you were a victim of ID Theft, it is very important to report the PUA fraud activity to the Department and return the money.  Doing so will remove these fraudulent payments from being reported as income on the end of the year 1099G distribution.

The Department of Labor & Industry has identified fraudulent scams leveraging social media, text messaging, and email to lure unsuspecting individuals into providing personal information so that the scammers can claim their identity. 

Anyone who receives a paper check in the mail and did not file for unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania or received a deposit in your account that you did not apply for should not cash the checks and should not spend that money. Cashing the checks/using the money knowing that you have not applied for PUA or any other UC program may be deemed fraud and repayment will be required.  Criminal charges are also possible.

Pennsylvania’s Office of Unemployment Compensation offers the following directions:

To return paper checks, Individuals should write "void" on the check and return it to:

Pennsylvania Treasury Department 
651 Boas Street
Room 400 L&I Building
Harrisburg, PA 17120

​Anyone who receives a direct deposit and did not file for unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania should not use the funds. Using the funds knowing that you have not applied for PUA or any other UC program may be deemed fraud and repayment will be required.

The funds should be returned to:

Department of Labor and Industry

651 Boas  St, Room 500

Harrisburg, PA 17121

​Please include a brief signed statement with the reason you are returning the check and include your printed name, address, last four of your social security number, phone number and email address.

Phone: Call the PA Fraud Hotline at 1-800-692-7469, review the Identity Theft form above to ensure you have all the information prepared to provide your report.  

You may also want to file a police report with the municipality you resided in at the time the unemployment benefits in question were paid. A copy of the police report must be provided to the Office of Unemployment Compensation.

Additional information is available at https://www.uc.pa.gov/Pages/Report-Fraud-Here.aspx#