Ky. man unable to get help from unemployment office after discovering someone else filed using his name

Published: Feb. 25, 2021 at 9:42 PM EST
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Thousands of Kentuckians were left jobless because of the COVID-19 pandemic and forced to turn to the unemployment line. But, Richard Cahal wasn’t one of them, so what he got in the mail from the Kentucky Labor Cabinet Monday was surprising.

“It was a letter stating what my monetary determination was and stated that this is how much money I would receive,” Cahal said. “That had in it the last four quarters of my earnings, my employer, my social security number, my name, and my address, the only problem is, I never filed for unemployment.”

After numerous unanswered phone calls and emails to the unemployment office trying to straighten it out, Cahal has taken it upon himself to protect his information the best he can.

“Putting credit alerts on our credit and any monies that we have, making sure that my wife and I are the only two people that can access that, it can’t be accessed online, things like that,” Cahal said.

General Counsel Amy Cubbage announced Thursday a form on the unemployment office’s website to report any fraudulent filings.

But with Cahal’s luck hearing back from anyone up to this point, it doesn’t give him much faith in the new form either.

“It actually takes somebody to look at it and process it and that’s where I have a problem,” Cahal said. “This whole issue would probably be solved in five minutes if somebody would take the time, pay attention, and just take care of it.”

In an unemployment update during the governor’s COVID-19 briefing, Cubbage said the unemployment office has been working with local law enforcement partners to try to prosecute people responsible for the numerous fraudulent filings. She expects several prosecutions in the coming months.

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