Improper payments are a fact of life in every state, as cases where the recipient isn’t eligible for benefits can often slip through the cracks. While they do happen, employers and state officials are always on the lookout for ways to limit these unemployment claims, because each one can lead to higher expenses and tax rates.

Many states have initiatives in place to curb improper payments, but one has risen above the rest: Arizona. According to the Cronkite News Service, this state had the lowest number of incorrect unemployment claims across the country in 2013. This is in sharp contrast to only several years ago, when Arizona was on the opposite end of that spectrum.

Mark Darmer, deputy director of programs for Arizona’s Department of Economic Security, told the media outlet that this rapid improvement is due to several key initiatives in the state.

“We took that very seriously,” Darmer told Cronkite News Service, speaking of the high rate of improper unemployment claims in Arizona. “We put in place several quality initiatives within the unemployment insurance program here in the department to bring down that improper payment rate.”

This included checking to see if any inmates were receiving benefits, following new hires to ensure nobody continued making claims and closely watching tax returns. Employers have also lent assistance to the cause, checking for accuracy on their end and implementing measures where applicable.

Unemployment rate remains high
The focus on improper claims is understandable, especially as the unemployment rate in Arizona remains high. According to the Arizona Department of Administration, the state’s rate was 6.9 percent in June, up from the previous month’s 6.8 percent. The national rate was 6.1 percent.

While this is up month-over-month, Arizona has actually experienced a yearly drop. In June 2013, the jobless rate was 8.1 percent, the department explained. Furthermore, the state lost more than 39,000 nonfarm jobs from May of this year to June. Out of the 11 major employment sectors, five added jobs while the remaining all reported losses. The largest gain was felt in professional and business services, at an uptick of 3,900. Financial activities came in second with a gain of 2,200 jobs.

Juggling tax rates and difficult employees can become challenging at your company. Here at Corporate Cost Control, we understand these problems and are well-positioned to help. Our extensive background in cost control and human resources will allow you to better manage your unemployment insurance expenses.


Contact CCC to see how we can save your organization time and money.
Contact our Sales Team
(800) 207-6926

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