You may become aware that an unemployment benefits claim was filed using your identity (ID) by receiving mail from TWC, or your employer may receive a notice that a claim was filed under your name. If you, or your employer, have information that an unemployment claim was filed using a stolen identity, you should report the ID theft claim on TWC’s online portal. Continue reading this page for more information about how to report ID theft.

Report ID Theft
 

On this page:

Overview

Unemployment benefits identity (ID) theft occurs when an imposter uses another person’s personal information, like their name and Social Security number, to file a claim for unemployment benefits. Individuals who are the targets of ID theft have usually had their personal information exposed somewhere other than TWC. Take steps to secure your identity online by practicing Internet security best practices. Treat your TWC account and all accounts like you would your bank account. Find information on how to report suspected ID theft on an unemployment claim and what steps you should take if your identity has been stolen.

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What To Do If You Suspect Your ID Was Used to File an Unemployment Benefits Claim

If you are not claiming unemployment benefits and have information that a claim was filed using your identity, you should report the ID theft claim on TWC’s online portal:

Report ID Theft

The online portal provides a secure method for reporting fraud, including ID theft. Under the “type of submission” drop-down menu, select “Report Suspected Fraud,” “Did not file the UI Claim,” or “Did not file the UI claim but now need to,” as appropriate for your situation. Provide your name, Social Security number, and contact information. You should also upload your statement regarding the fraudulent claim, copies of any claim documents you may have received from TWC, along with a copy of your driver license, which TWC will use to verify your identity. The portal accepts PDF, BMP, GIF, JPG, JPEG, PNG or TIFF files. Submit the documents only once.

 

Individuals who report suspected ID theft to TWC do not always receive a call, email, or letter in response to the information provided. TWC will only contact you if we need clarification.  

We recommend using the secure online portal to report any suspected ID theft claim. However, if you cannot use the UI Fraud Submission portal, send an email to TWC.fraud@twc.state.tx.us or leave a message on the TWC Fraud Hotline at 800-252-3642. Include your full name, Social Security number, address, phone number, and a description of the information you have regarding the ID theft claim.

Your employer may receive a “Notice of Application for Unemployment Benefits” from TWC informing them that a claim was filed using your name. If they receive this notice and you did not file the claim, tell your employer to follow the instructions for responding to the notice and indicate the claim was filed by an imposter.

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What To Do If You Receive an Overpayment Notice

If you receive a “Statement of Overpaid Unemployment Benefits Account” (overpayment notice) for an unemployment benefits claim that you did not file, you should report the ID theft claim on TWC’s online portal.

Once TWC confirms that a claim was filed using a stolen ID, the individual named on the claim is not responsible for any overpayment and the employer’s tax rate or reimbursement is not affected. Once ID theft is confirmed, any future overpayment statements will be suspended. However, you may continue to receive billing statements while the investigation is ongoing.

You do not need to respond to these statements.

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What To Do If You Receive a Debit Card or Check

If you received a debit card or check payment for an unemployment benefits claim that you did not file, you should report the ID theft claim on TWC’s online portal.

If you received a debit card from US Bank for an unemployment claim you did not file, you should destroy the card. Do not activate the debit card account.

If you received a check(s) for a claim you did not file, you should return the check(s) to TWC, along with an explanation as to why the check(s) is being returned. See example explanation below:

I am returning this check(s) to TWC because I did not file the claim for unemployment benefits. Full name on the claim: <insert full name shown on the claim>

Social Security number on the claim: <insert full SSN or the last 4 digits of the SSN>

Return checks to:

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

Do not include the name on the claim or any part of a Social Security number on the outside of the envelope.

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What Employers Can Do If You Suspect ID Theft

Employers may receive a “Notice of Application for Unemployment Benefits”, a “Request for Work Separation Information”, or other form from TWC requesting information on a claim. If you receive a notice for an employee who is still working, or for a person who never worked for you, please respond to the notice immediately. See Responding to a Notice of Application for more information.

If your employee receives material from TWC for an unemployment claim they did not file, you should advise your employee to report the ID theft claim using TWC’s online portal. While either you or your employee may report the suspected ID theft using the portal, we prefer that the information comes directly from the person whose identity was stolen. Your employee can find information about how to report ID theft in the section above.

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What To Do If You Receive a Notice to Verify Your Identity Through ID.me

If you are claiming unemployment benefits, TWC may ask you to verify your identity through ID.me. TWC has partnered with ID.me, an identity verification service, to protect your personal information and prevent unemployment benefits ID theft. The process is fast, easy, and secure. The service is free and ensures you are the only one who can access your unemployment claim information.

If you are claiming unemployment benefits and received a letter from TWC advising you to verify your identity using ID.me, please go to ID.me to verify your identity.

Verify My Claim by Using ID.me

If you did NOT file a claim for unemployment benefits and received a letter from TWC asking you to verify your identity using ID.me, you should NOT complete the verification using ID.me. Instead, you should report the ID theft claim on TWC’s online portal. See the Suspected ID Theft on Unemployment Benefits Claim section for more information about reporting the ID Theft claim.

Report ID Theft

How to Use ID.me

TWC uses ID.me to verify the identity of an individual who filed a claim for unemployment benefits. If you are not claiming unemployment benefits, you should not use ID.me.

Most claimants can verify their identity using the ID.me self-service webpage. You will need to submit photos of your:

  1. A government-issued ID (driver license or passport)
  2. Financial and utility records (credit bureaus and mobile telecom providers)
  3. Biometric verification (a photo of yourself, i.e. a “selfie” that matches the government-issued ID sent for #1)

You might not be able to have your identity verified using the self-service webpage if:

  • The photos of your government-issued ID or your personal photo (“selfie”) are blurry or shadowed
  • If you have credit issues, such as no credit or frozen credit or your credit information is incorrect
  • Or if the phone number you submit is not associated with your name.

If you cannot use the self-service option, you may be able to verify your identity during a  video conference call with ID.me. To verify your identity using a video call, you will need:

  1. Two primary forms of valid, unexpired IDs
  2. A smart phone or tablet to take pictures
  3. A device that will allow you to join a video call, such as a computer with a webcam and microphone or a phone with a camera.
    1. For the video call, you will need to upload pictures of your IDs, take a photo of yourself (selfie) and submit it, and be able to answer some questions verbally.

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What To Do If You Received an IRS Form 1099-G, But Did Not File the Claim

The Department of Justice Insurance Fraud Task Force (NUIFTF) is investigating numerous fraud schemes targeting state unemployment agencies, including TWC.

Criminal actors are filing fraudulent unemployment claims using stolen identities.

Because unemployment benefits are taxable, TWC issues Form 1099-G to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and claimants. Individuals may receive Form 1099-G indicating that they were paid unemployment benefits for a claim they did not file. If you received a Form 1099-G for unemployment benefits on a claim you did not file, you should report it immediately using the online portal.

Identity Theft and Your IRS Tax Return

Everyone who receives unemployment benefits will get an IRS Form 1099-G (Certain Government Payments), used for reporting the income on your tax returns. When you file your federal income tax return, you must report income you received, but you should not report income that you did not receive. When you file your income taxes, only include income you actually received. Do not wait to receive a corrected 1099-G to file your taxes. Refer to the Identity Theft and Unemployment Benefits page on IRS.gov for updates and additional tax filing information.

If you get a Form 1099-G but did not claim unemployment benefits or collect any or all the benefits listed on the Form, report the ID theft claim to TWC using the online Unemployment Fraud Submission portal and visit the IRS website for guidance on ID theft involving unemployment benefits. Once TWC has confirmed an individual’s identity has been stolen, TWC will send a corrected report to the IRS.

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Additional Suggestions for Victims of ID Theft

Victims of identity theft are advised to take the following actions:

  1. Contact the police department in the city in which you reside and get an incident report and number. 
  2. Consult the Federal Trade Commission website to report the ID theft and for prevention tips and resources.
  3. Contact one of the three credit reporting agencies listed below and ask that a free fraud alert be placed on your credit report. If needed, ask to have your credit account frozen. Also request a free credit report. You only need to contact one of the three agencies because the law requires the agency to call to contact the other two.
  4. If your bank or credit union account was compromised, contact the fraud department of each institution. Report the identity theft and, if needed, ask them to close or freeze the compromised account. If your ATM card was compromised, contact your financial institution and request a new card.
  5. If unauthorized charges appear on your legitimate credit cards, cancel the cards and request replacement cards with new account numbers. If an authorized card was opened using your ID, cancel the cards and close the accounts.
  6. Contact the Social Security Administration office. See How to Report Identity Theft to SSA for more details.

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How to Report Identity Theft to Social Security Administration

Your Social Security Number opens doors to so much of your personal and financial information that criminals try to steal it to avoid paying Social Security taxes, to work in the United States, to steal money from your bank account or to engage in other illegal activities.

If you believe someone has stolen your identity or Social Security Number, contact the Social Security Administration (SSA):

  • Visit www.ssa.gov and type "identity theft" in the search box
  • Call: 800-269-0271
    Fax: 410-597-0118
  • Social Security Fraud Hotline
    PO Box 17785
    Baltimore, MD 21235

To verify the accuracy of the earnings reported on your SSN or to request a copy of your Social Security Statement, you may call SSA at 800-772-1213.

For more information, view the Social Security Administration’s Identity Theft and Your Social Security Number.

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