Under Article V of the Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation Law, the Department of Labor & Industry must examine promptly each application for benefits and determine whether the application is valid. In order to ensure that every individual is given an opportunity for a fair hearing, the law also provides for an appeal process to allow interested parties to object to an unemployment compensation determination or decision.
Whether you are the claimant or the employer, you may file your own appeal to a UC Referee or the UC Board of Review (Board) and represent yourself before the Referee or the Board, or you may have an attorney or any other advocate represent you.
Benefits you received to which you were not entitled are known as overpayments. Depending on the situation, these overpayments are divided into two groups: those which are your fault and those which are not. These findings have become alarmingly common as of late do to the utter chaos that enveloped the unemployment compensation system during and following the COVID 19 pandemic. Overpayments can include:
A "fault overpayment" will result when you receive benefits to which you are not entitled by reason of your fault, such as withholding or misrepresenting material facts to obtain UC. and are the most serious finding. if not appealed you must repay a fault overpayment.
In addition, you will be required to pay interest on any fault overpayment principal not paid within 15 days after the Notice of Overpayment determination is issued. Interest will continue to be assessed against the unpaid balance. A lien may be filed against you to recover the overpayment amount, the interest assessed and any fees and penalties. Recovery of the fault overpayment may also be deducted from future benefits during the benefit year when the overpayment was paid and the six-year period immediately following the end of that benefit year.
The Pennsylvania UC Law also provides for prosecution and penalties for anyone who knowingly makes a false statement or who knowingly withholds information to obtain or increase benefits. If convicted you could be fined up to $1,000 or be imprisoned for up to 30 days or both for each false statement or failure to disclose a material fact. You would also be required to pay restitution for the amount of benefits you improperly received and would be ineligible to receive benefits for one year following the date of conviction.
In almost all cases your will have a very limited amount of time to appeal. Thats why it is essential for you to come into our office or seek other qualified legal counsel as soon as a Unemployment Compensation Decision has been rendered against you as always Csonka Law offers one free initial consultation to help you explore your options.
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