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Economy and Business

Ohio to take money from unemployment cheaters in the form of refund checks
State will start seizing federal income tax refunds from jobless benefits frauds

Karen Kasler
Benjamin Johnson is with the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services.
Courtesy of WKSU
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People who’ve been cheating the state to get unemployment benefits may not get their federal tax refunds.

The state says it plans to seize the refunds of people who defrauded the state’s jobless benefits system, which is owed about $40 millionfrom people who got benefits they didn’t deserve.

Ohio Job and Family Services spokesman Ben Johnson says the refunds could take a big chunk out of that debt.

Hear more on Ohio taking money from unemployment "cheaters"

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“Because it’s a brand new program, we can’t say for certain,” Johnson said. “But we know that both New York and Illinois collected about $26 million in the first year of the program in their states. And we’re hopeful the collections will be similar here in Ohio in the first year.”

The undeserved payments have gone to people who have returned to work but don’t report it, or collect benefits without actively seeking new jobs, or lie about the reasons they’re unemployed.

Ohio already grabs state income tax refunds from those who wrongly received benefits.

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