BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - The Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC) says notices that were sent out to nearly 7,600 unemployed residents claiming they were overpaid benefits and owed thousands of dollars to the LWC was a “technical issue."
Officials with the LWC say they are working with their vendor to correct the overpayment notices that were generated Sept. 9 and 10.
“We apologize for any confusion,” the LWC said in a statement issued Thursday, Sept. 17. Click here for the full statement.
“These folks were caught up in an unusual situation of it was at the end of March; the new quarter starts April 1. Their week of filing was also the first week of April, so even though they were filing March 29 and March 30, their base quarter ended in April, or their filing quarter ended in April,” said Ava Dejoie, LWC secretary.
Dejoie says the miscalculation, along with nearly 97,000 people filing for assistance during the last week of March, overwhelmed their normal process to catch the mistake.
“We realize that it’s an error and we are working to rectify that. Most of those individuals this morning have on their higher dash board a notice canceling that overpayment,” said Dejoie.
It’s a mishap that could be very costly for the agency and taxpayers. This week, the governor announced the state is running out of money to make unemployment payments. The solution? Raise taxes on businesses and/or take out a loan from the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
“We truly regret that this occurred to anyone and we apologize for our error. We are working to get it fixed. Any benefits received, they did not receive that through any reporting or error on their part, so we will work through our administrative rules to correct that and not hold them liable for that, for any funds received from that,” said Dejoie.
If you received an overpayment notice, officials say no action is required of you at this time. Officials say the vast majority of residents who received the overpayment notice do not owe anything to the LWC.
The LWC will soon be sending out a “Notice of Adjustment” to those who received the notice and do not owe anything. Officials say the overpayment balance will be corrected to reflect $0.
An email has been set up exclusively for overpayment related issues. If you have additional questions after receiving an adjustment notice, you can contact the LWC by emailing Septovrpymtissue@lwc.la.gov.
Click here to report a typo.