Vermont Department of Labor temporarily suspends online UI application for new filers in order to combat fraud

For Immediate Release:
April 30, 2020

Kyle Thweatt, Vermont Department of Labor
802-461-8807 |

MONTPELIER, Vt. – On Wednesday, April 28, the Vermont Department of Labor disabled its online unemployment insurance initial claim application in response to a sharp increase in fraudulent claims being filed. Upon review of the claims being submitted, more than 90% of initial claims were being flagged as fraudulent.

In the meantime, Vermonters who need to file a first-time claim or open a new benefit year can do so by contacting the UI Claimant Assistance Center at 877-214-3330. The Claimant Assistance Center is open Monday-Saturday from 8:00a.m. to 5:30p.m.

“Here at the Department, our ultimate goal is to protect Vermonters, whether that be ensuring individuals receive timely benefits or preventing fraudsters from using the identities of innocent Vermonters to defraud the state. In this case, the most secure solution was to remove the application and make the criminals have to call to open a claim. When we did this, the number of claims being filed dropped by 90% and so too did the fraud,” said Labor Commissioner Michael Harrington.

If an individual receives any mail or notices from the Department of Labor, specifically the Unemployment Insurance division, and has not applied for benefits, they should report this to the Department immediately. This can be done either by submitting an online fraud report or by contacting the UI Fraud Tip Line at 802-828-4104. Likewise, if an employer receives any requests for separation information for an employee who is still working, this may also be an indication of fraud and should be reported immediately.

To safeguard the system and the identities of Vermonters, the Department is working to strengthen fraud prevention measures to better detect and prevent fraudulent claims filing going forward.

More information about how Vermonters can protect themselves against unemployment fraud can be found at

3 thoughts on “Vermont Department of Labor temporarily suspends online UI application for new filers in order to combat fraud

  1. The Labor Department needs to conduct a comprehensive review of all its operating procedures to identify the weaknesses that allowed this type or any type of massive fraud to occur.

    The Department realizes that it has serious computer system problems. Simply citing computer system deficiencies as an excuse for massive fraud is not acceptable. With this knowledge at hand, interim operating procedures have to be developed to compensate for the existing problems until the current computer problems can be fixed. With Covid money, the financial resources are now available to fix the computer or other existing problems with control systems.

    As Gov. Howard Dean said, “This is crazy. What’s wrong with this agency?”………Time for Gov. Scott to straighten things out at the Department of Labor.

  2. Gee, one wouldn’t think that the Bernie Boys and Girls in Vermont would be so callous as to illegally take advantage of The US government and Vermont’s largess would you? OH, yes the would as they do all the time! If there is free stuff to be had, Vermont progs will be the first pigs at the trough…

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