Title 28
Labor and Labor Relations

Chapter 42
Employment Security — General Provisions

R.I. Gen. Laws 28-42-62.1

 28-42-62.1.  Fraud and abuse.

(a) (1) It shall be unlawful to do any of the following:

(A) Make or cause to be made any knowingly false or fraudulent material statement or material representation for the purpose of obtaining or denying any benefits;

(B) Present, or cause to be presented, any knowingly false or fraudulent written or oral material statement in support of, or in opposition to, any claim for benefits or petition regarding the continuation, termination, or modification of benefits;

(C) Knowingly assist, aid and abet, solicit, or conspire with any person who engages in an unlawful act under this section;

(D) Willfully misrepresent or fail to disclose any material fact in order to avoid or reduce any contribution or other payment required of an employing unit under chapters 42 — 44 of this title;

(E) Willfully fail to report or provide false or misleading information regarding ownership changes as required by regulations promulgated by the department.

(F) Willfully make or require any deduction from wages to pay all, or any portion of, the contributions required from employers, or try to induce any individual to waive any right under chapters 42 — 44 of this title.

(2) For purposes of this section, "statement" includes, but is not limited to, the receipt of unemployment benefits deposited to a direct deposit account or electronic payment card, any endorsement of a benefit check, application for registration, oral or written statement or report, proof of unemployment, or other documentation offered as proof of, or the absence of, entitlement to benefits or the amount of benefits.

(3) If it is determined that any person concealed or knowingly failed to disclose that which is required by law to be revealed; knowingly gave or used perjured testimony or false evidence; knowingly made a false statement of fact; participated in the creation or presentation of evidence which he or she knows to be false; or otherwise engaged in conduct in violation of this section, that person shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and subject in criminal proceedings to a fine and/or penalty not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or double the value of the fraud, whichever is greater, or by imprisonment up to one year in state prison, or both.

(4) Beginning October 1, 2013, whenever the director establishes that an erroneous payment was made to an individual due to fraud committed by the individual, that individual will be assessed a penalty equal to fifteen percent (15%) of the amount of the erroneous payment. All penalties assessed and collected under this subsection shall be immediately deposited into the employment security fund.

(b) The director, in consultation with the attorney general, shall establish a form to give notice that the endorsement of a benefit check sent or the receipt of unemployment benefits deposited to a direct deposit account or electronic payment card pursuant to chapter 44 of this title is the endorser's affirmation that he or she is qualified to receive benefits under the employment security act. The notice shall be sent to all individuals who are presently receiving benefits and given to those who file claims for benefits in the future.

History of Section.
P.L. 1995, ch. 158, 2; P.L. 2013, ch. 120, 1; P.L. 2013, ch. 130, 1; P.L. 2015, ch. 101, 1; P.L. 2015, ch. 113, 1.