The Labor Department's $7.1 Billion 'Oops'

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Posted: Jul 10, 2010 10:37 AM
While taxpayers are working hard to pay for the unemployment benefits of people struggling to find work, some of the unemployed have received more than they were legally eligible to get:

Preliminary estimates released by the U.S. Department of Labor find that, in 2009, states made more than $7.1 billion in overpayments in unemployment insurance, up from $4.2 billion the year before. The total amount of unemployment benefits paid in 2009 was $76.8 billion, compared to $41.6 billion in 2008.

Fraud accounted for $1.55 billion in estimated overpayments last year, while errors by state agencies were blamed for $2.27 billion, according to the Labor Department.