If making improvements in stamping this out isn’t the absolute number one priority for the Jindal adminsitration, it’s hard to figure what could possibly trump it…
Louisiana tops the nation’s list of “improper” payments for unemployment insurance with a 3-year rate of 38.67%. Of course, this is the “improper” payments they know about (as only 29.7% of overpayments have been recovered). A stunning 28% of Louisanans who claimed benefits did so even after returning to work. However, while the Louisiana data points are bad, they are not alone. As the chart below shows… 16 states have “improper” payment rates of over 14%. One wonders why the world doesn’t trust the US so much anymore?
The chart Zero Hedge references is here…
And a breakdown of how the fraudulent payments come about…
“E.S. Registration” is defined thusly: “The claimant is not registered with the state’s Employment Service or job bank as required by state statute, disqualifying the claimant from being eligible for benefits.”
“Benefit Year Earnings” means “The claimant continues to claim and receive benefits after returning to work.”
In fairness, Zero Hedge is dead wrong that Louisiana is the worst state in the union for improper unemployment benefits. In Indiana, the three-year rate is over 49 percent, with a 32.75 percent rate last year. And Nebraska had an improper payment rate of over 24 percent last year.
But that’s small solace for Louisiana.
In all, there were some $63 million in improper unemployment payments in Louisiana last year.
The good news: things are getting better.
The rate of improper payments in 2010 was 52.99%. Yes, you read that right.
In 2011 it fell to 32.83%. Last year the number dropped to 20.76%.