Thousands in Michigan accused of fraud after computer glitch

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Tens of thousands of people in Michigan falsely accused of fraud all due to a computer program.

The automated system was put in place by the state's unemployment agency, but now many are asking about its track record.

Blanche Jackson says she is in a fight for justice.

"My case is still pending," she said. "I just received a bill the other day. They want me to pay $4,000 after case has already been won."

According to Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI), Jackson is among tens of thousands in the state of Michigan accused of false unemployment insurance allegations by an automated computer system the state's Unemployment Insurance Agency started using in 2013.

Levin is calling on Gov. Rick Snyder to review all cases and reimburse those falsely accused of fraud

"The state has the obligation to seize the initiative and contact every single person subjected to a lawless, reckless, impersonal system," said Rep Sander Levin

The Sugar Law Center is working to help many victims find relief

"Whenever there is a discrepancy ... on the form they assume employer is correct and the claimant has committed fraud," said attorney John Philo of the Sugar Law Center.

Levin says he wants justice for even those who have already paid fees after being falsely accused. But a state law prohibits the agency from reopening fraud cases that are older than a year if the agency issued a determination and it was not appealed by the party.

"There's no reason to look for an excuse," Levin said. "Just to the state, do it."

"We continue to work with federal government on a plan to do that, but just to make clear it was never a case where we were refusing to do anything," said Ken Silfven
Communications Director with the Michigan Talent Investment Agency.

But victims say until the state provides a solution and their names are cleared they'll keep this fight alive.

"People are turning their paperwork accurately," Jackson said. "If it’s not getting seen and being pushed aside, they are going to end up like me owing $20,000 to $30,000."