The Michigan unemployment insurance system made more news last week. The results of a court’s decision were positive for the state. However, the case highlighted some major issues with the state’s automated unemployment processing system – called MIDAS.
The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that it was dismissing a lawsuit brought by former unemployment benefits recipients claiming the state wrongfully accused them of unemployment fraud.
The state began using an automated system, in 2013, to identify unemployment fraud cases. The system, unfortunately, wrongly identified tens of thousands of people – and some of them sued to get their money back, plus fees and interest.
The court said the plaintiffs waited too long to file their lawsuit.
WMXI has the following report.
Jennifer Lord, an attorney for the plaintiffs, says the state is abusing a legal technicality to evade responsibility, and the next stop is the Michigan Supreme Court.
“We want everyone to know we’re not giving up,” she said. “We’re in it for the long haul, and we’re going to continue to fight this as long as it takes.”
To date, the State of Michigan has returned more than $16 million in erroneously denied payments and penalties.