Identity theft guidance regarding unemployment compensation reporting


Notice: Historical Content

This is an archival or historical document and may not reflect current law, policies or procedures.

Alert – Whether payments made to imposters under unemployment compensation programs as a result of a confirmed case of identity theft should be reported on Form 1099-G, Certain Government Payments.

Questions have been raised about the reporting of payments made under unemployment compensation programs that, due to identity theft, were not made to the individuals under whose names the benefits were claimed. In these identity theft schemes, fraudulent claims for unemployment compensation have been made by imposters using the names and personal information of unrelated individuals who have not filed claims. The payments made as a result of the fraudulent claims are made to the identity thieves, and the unrelated individuals whose names and personal information were stolen did not receive any of the payments. Questions have been raised about whether the benefits paid under these circumstances should be reported on Form 1099-G, Certain Government Payments, in the names of the unrelated individuals who did not file the claims or receive the payments.

If a payor or a law enforcement agency determines based on all facts and circumstances that, due to identity theft, payments made under an unemployment compensation program were not made to the individual under whose name the benefits were claimed, the payments should not be reported on Form 1099-G.

If payments made due to identity theft are mistakenly reported on Form 1099-G in the name of an identity theft victim, a corrected Form 1099-G reporting $0 should be issued to the identity theft victim and filed with the IRS as soon as possible after the error is discovered.