ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A area small business proprietor said he alerted the point out when an individual fraudulently filed for unemployment underneath his identify. Having said that, he was acquiring a tough time acquiring any one to hear to him. Kevin Lawton owns Futons & Frames on Menaul around Carlisle. “We opened in 1991,” he claimed. “So, we have been listed here a extensive time.”
Lawton bought a letter from the New Mexico Department of Workforce Alternatives before this thirty day period and figured an personnel, he experienced to let go in March when the pandemic hit, experienced submitted for unemployment. Then, he looked closer and observed that the name on the assert was his have. “I’m not an staff. I’m so quick to trace,” Lawton described.
The situation went from funny to annoying, Lawton reported. He figured he could distinct it all up with a fast cellphone call. “That’s not what happens,” he said, shaking his head.
When Lawton did get anyone on the mobile phone, they requested him for his information to confirm his id. “And she goes, ‘Oh, which is the overall opposite of what we have on file with Kevin Lawton.’ I go, ‘Stop. Which is me!’”
Meanwhile, the letters kept coming. “I acquire yet another actually slender letter. So, now I’m guaranteed it is taken treatment of,” Lawton said. “And, once again, it was not.”
A letter he received past Friday confirmed that Kevin Lawton, or at minimum the human being pretending to be him, is eligible for advantages. “You search at this, just in shock heading, it’s me. I’m not in desperate require of money. I’m performing seven days a 7 days,” he said.
Workforce Options Secretary Bill McCamley reported that unemployment fraud is really frequent during the COVID-19 crisis. “I won’t lie to you. It’s an issue, and it definitely tends to make me offended that these thieves are out there.”
McCamley claimed that since the pandemic started, New Mexico has recovered a lot more than $17 million that was offered to criminals. For instance, between Could and June, the state observed a lot more than 480 persons illegally submitted for unemployment in jail.
“But the tension on our agency is to get income out the doorway to assist folks all through these seriously challenging situations. There is also force to cease this theft. So, we have to type of equilibrium those people issues relocating ahead,” McCamley said.
KRQE News 13 requested the point out if anyone was seeking into Lawton’s scenario. Then, about an hour just before this story aired, Lawton termed with an update. He mentioned he was notified the account is now frozen and being investigated.
Workforce Methods reported it has about 6,500 accounts locked down as of Thursday so that they can be vetted more. Any individual who demands to report a fraudulent declare can e mail id.confirm@point out.nm.us or connect with the fraud line at 505243-7283.