Definition of Overpayment

If we paid you unemployment benefits that you were not eligible to receive, that is an overpayment. You must repay those benefits even if the overpayment was not your fault. If you commit unemployment fraud, you must repay the benefits you were not entitled to receive plus a 15 percent penalty on the benefits you fraudulently received.

Examples of what can cause an overpayment:

  • You failed to report earnings or reported an incorrect earnings amount when you requested benefit payment.
  • You provided false information about your job separation or work search.
  • You committed fraud by giving false information when you applied for benefits or when you requested payment.
  • The wage history we used to establish your claim included errors or belonged to another individual, and correction of the wage errors resulted in a lower benefit amount than initially determined.
  • An appeals ruling reversed your eligibility after you had already received benefits.
  • You failed to register with WorkInTexas.com, or with your local One-Stop Career Center if residing outside of Texas, when required.
  • You failed to participate in Reemployment Services or other job assistance programs with Workforce Solutions when required.

If you have questions about why you have an overpayment, contact a Tele-Center at 800-939-6631 to discuss your claim. To discuss your repayment, contact Benefit Overpayment Collections at 512-936-3338.

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Notification of Overpayment

If you have an overpayment, we will mail you a Determination on Payment of Unemployment Benefits letter explaining the reason for your overpayment, what weeks were overpaid, and the amount of money you must repay.

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Appeals

You may appeal any TWC determination that says we cannot pay you benefits or you have an overpayment.  For appeal information, see your Determination on Payment of Unemployment Benefits or our Introduction to Unemployment Benefits Appeals page.

Repaying Your Overpayment During an Appeal

If you are not requesting benefits:

  • You are not required to send payments during the appeal process. If the appeal decision upholds the overpayment, you must begin repaying the overpayment. If TWC reverses or changes the overpayment amount, we will adjust the overpayment, as needed.

If you are requesting benefits:

  • We will apply each eligible payment toward reducing your overpayment. If the appeal decision reverses or changes the overpayment amount, we will adjust the overpayment, as needed.

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Billing Statements

TWC will mail you a Statement of Overpaid Unemployment Benefit Account, which is a billing statement.  Contact us as instructed in the statement.

Within 30 days of the date we determine that you have an overpayment, we mail your first billing statement. About 30 days later, we mail a second billing statement along with a repayment schedule (unless your case is in prosecution).

We will continue to send you monthly billing statements as long as you consistently make payments.

Multiple Billing Statements

If you have overpayments on multiple programs or claims, we send a separate billing statement for each program. We cannot provide one overall statement if your overpayments cover several programs or claims. You may, however, add the amounts together and pay with one check each month. You do not need to send multiple checks or money orders each month if you receive more than one statement.

Inactive Account

If we do not receive repayment or speak with you within 30 days of mailing your second billing statement, your overpayment account is considered inactive.  Although we do not mail billing statements on inactive accounts, your overpayment stays on your claim record and state overpayment recovery proceeds until you repay it in full.

Overpayments from Past Unemployment Periods

You may receive an overpayment billing statement even if you have not applied for unemployment benefits recently.  The Texas Constitution requires that all debts owed to the state be repaid, with no statute of limitations. When we receive updated information, we mail you a billing statement as a reminder that you must pay the debt. For example, when an employer reports hiring you for a new job, we mail a statement reminding you of the unemployment overpayment you still owe.

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Why You Must Repay Your Overpayment

State law requires TWC to recover all unemployment benefits overpayments. There is no statute of limitations on debts owed to the state.  There is no exception for hardship.
It is important to promptly repay an overpayment because:

  • The overpayment stays on your claim record until you repay it in full.
  • If you apply for benefits, TWC will apply each eligible payment toward reducing your overpayment until the overpayment is repaid.
  • TWC can take legal action against you to recover the money, including suing you in a civil court.
  • The Texas State Comptroller can take action to recover your overpayment by withholding certain payments to you. That means the state cannot pay you lottery winnings, unclaimed property, unemployment benefits, or state job-related expenses, except for wages, until you repay the overpayment in full. For example:
  • Some state funding for college students cannot be released until you repay the overpayment in full.

Notice of State Payment Held

A Notice of State Payment Held is a letter from the Texas State Comptroller to notify you when they recover an unemployment benefits overpayment by withholding certain other payments to you.  A payment hold may also be referred to as a warrant hold.

The state cannot pay you any of your unclaimed property, lottery winnings, unemployment benefits, or state job-related expenses until you repay the benefits overpayment in full.

If you wish to speed up repaying your overpayment debt, you may complete the Voluntary Offset on the back of your Notice of State Payment Held and send it to the State Comptroller as instructed on that form.

For information on how to provide full payment to TWC and obtain a quick release of a Comptroller’s payment hold, call Benefit Overpayment Collections at 512-936-3338.

Property Lien

TWC may take civil action when an overpayment is unpaid and meets certain criteria.  We may file an Abstract of Assessment in the county of record. An Abstract of Assessment has the effect of a civil suit. If you do not agree that you have been properly served, you or your attorney may file a Notice of Judicial Review with the District Court of the respective county.

To request the payoff amount for your overpayment, send a fax to Benefit Overpayment Collections at 512-936-3799. Include the reason for your request and a copy of the Abstract of Assessment.

For information on how to pay off your overpayment and obtain a quick release of the property lien, call Benefit Overpayment Collections at 512-936-3338.

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How an Overpayment Affects Current Benefits

State law requires that you repay your overpayments before we can pay further unemployment benefits. There is no exception in the law for hardship cases. If you are requesting unemployment benefits, continue to submit biweekly payment requests. We will apply each eligible payment toward reducing your overpayment until it is repaid in full. You must repay all of your overpayment before we can pay further benefits.

If you are requesting benefits, you cannot request a repayment plan and we will cancel any repayment arrangements you made before beginning your claim. You can mail additional payments to TWC, however, we will continue to apply each eligible benefits payment toward your overpayment until your overpayment is repaid.

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How to Repay an Overpayment if Requesting Benefits

If you are currently requesting unemployment benefits, continue to submit biweekly payment requests. We will apply each eligible payment toward your overpayment. You must repay all of your overpayment before we can pay you any further benefits. By law, there are no exceptions for hardship cases.

Mail additional payments to:

TWC Revenue & Trust Management
P.O. Box 149352
Austin, TX  78714-9352

If you cannot repay the entire amount at once, call TWC at 512-936-3338 to ask if you can set up a repayment plan.

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How to Repay an Overpayment if Not Requesting Benefits

You can repay your overpayment by mailing a check or money order payable to TWC. To ensure proper credit, include on your check or money order your name, Social Security number and the account number shown on your billing statement, and mail to:

TWC Revenue & Trust Management
P.O. Box 149352
Austin, TX 78714-9352

We cannot accept payment by phone or online, or by debit card, credit card or electronic check.

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Requesting a Repayment Plan

If you are not requesting benefits and you cannot repay the entire overpayment amount at once, contact Benefit Payment Collections to request a repayment plan. If your overpayment meets certain criteria, we can set up a repayment schedule. 

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Overpayments and Claims in Other States

Other State Overpayments & Texas Benefits

If you have an overpayment in another state, the other state can ask us to send your benefits to them until the overpayment is paid. If an overpayment from another state is collectable by Texas, we will notify you.

If you have a claim in Texas, continue to submit biweekly payment requests. We will apply each eligible payment toward the overpayment. After you repay the overpayment in full, we will release any remaining payable benefits to you.

Texas Overpayments & Other State Benefits

If you have an overpayment in Texas and receive benefits from another state, we can ask that state to recover the money for us. The other state will send your payable benefits to TWC to repay your overpayment, as allowed by the laws of the other state.

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Update Your Address

We mail important documents to the most recent address we have for you. Be sure to change your address as needed, so that you will receive all documents.

If you lost or did not receive documents we mailed to you, request copies through the TWC Open Records Coordinator:

  • Mail:
    TWC Open Records
    101 E. 15th St, Rm 266
    Austin, TX 78778-0001
  • In person:
    101 E. 15th St, Rm 266
    Austin, TX 78701
  • Email: open.records@twc.state.tx.us
  • Fax: 512-463-2990

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Bankruptcy

If you have filed for bankruptcy, call the Benefit Overpayment Collections Bankruptcy Representative at 512-936-3338. Be prepared to provide your case number and date of the bankruptcy filing. We will verify the status of the bankruptcy and add that information to your account.

While a bankruptcy case is active, we will temporarily stop overpayment recovery. If your overpayment debt is discharged in bankruptcy, we will permanently stop recovery of benefits. If the bankruptcy is dismissed, your repayment obligation continues and we will resume overpayment recovery.

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When the Claimant is Deceased

If a claimant who had an overpayment dies, whoever is managing that person's affairs should mail or fax a copy of the death certificate to Benefit Overpayment Collections so TWC can update our records. A photocopy is acceptable; we do not require a certified death certificate.

If there is a Comptroller’s payment hold on the claimant’s account, we can ask that the overpayment be repaid using funds from a probated estate and funds payable under the claimant's Social Security number.

  • Mail:
    TWC Benefit Overpayment Collections
    101 E. 15th St, Rm 556
    Austin, TX 78778-0001
  • Fax: 512-936-3799

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Payment Address

TWC Revenue & Trust Management
P.O. Box 149352
Austin, TX 78714-9352

Contact

If you have an overpayment, contact Benefit Overpayment Collections:

If you received a Notice of Potential Overpayment, contact Benefit Investigations

Last Verified: January 22, 2014

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