DENVER (AP) – More than 75% of Colorado claims for a federal unemployment assistance program for self-employed workers and independent contractors since July 18 were determined to be fraudulent.
State labor department officials say the problem has increased since mid-July, with false claims coming from within and without the state. The Denver Post reports that officials estimated they’ve received as many as 50,000 fraudulent claims in the two weeks since Aug. 22.
Congress authorized the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program earlier this year to help people not normally eligible to receive unemployment benefits, including independent contractors. Other states face widespread fraud concerns.