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Job Service overpaid unemployment benefits to a small percentage of North Dakotans

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States across the country are discovering that they over-paid COVID-19 unemployment benefits.

North Dakota is one of them.

A Job Service spokesperson tells KX News, this is not specific to the pandemic. Communications Officer Sarah Arntson says it’s something that happens to some degree in all unemployment offices.

The difference is, on a normal basis, unemployment is paid by state dollars, but with CARES Act dollars, the state has to follow federal rules in paying it back.

Since about mid-March, Job Service has paid out $816.5 million. Overpayments account for .48% of those funds.

“It is kind of a complex process, and we do that on purpose to make sure we can eliminate fraud. We just ask that people be really careful when they’re filling out their applications. We need people to be as accurate as possible when reporting their earnings, and the reasons for their separations from employment,” Arntson shared.

She says people often pay the difference back, and other times, the state offsets it with future benefit payments.

Arntson adds, Job Service will work with those who were affected on an individual basis to create realistic payment plans.

There isn’t a deadline at this time.

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