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Settlement Agreement - Brugman v. DUA

Brian Flynn, GBLS and Margaret Monsell, MLRI

Case alleged that DUA had a pattern and practice of alleging -- with no evidentiary basis whatsoever -- that claimants had misrepresented a material fact or facts in applying for UI. In nearly all these cases, a redetermination was conducted at the employer's request, following which the claimant's benefits were terminated and a notice of overpayment was issued imposing a 12 percent interest charge on the amount of overpayment.  Following informal and formal discovery of a representative sample of 50 such cases in 2010 and 2011, DUA conceded that in none of the cases was there a sufficient basis to allege claimant misrepresentation.

Under the terms of the settlement, DUA will train adjudicators and review examiners that any allegation of misrepresentation must be supported by a statement identifying the material fact at issue and the basis for concluding that the claimant knew or should have known that the fact was being misrepresented.  As to retrospective relief, DUA will contact all claimants (from the date of the 2010 filing of the complaint) whom it determined, in the context of a separation dispute, had committed a misrepresentation of facts, will rescind the finding of misrepresentation, will eliminate future interest payments and either refund past interest payments or credit them toward the amount of the overpayment, and will provide a waiver form and notify the claimant that he or she may apply for a waiver of any remaining overpayment.  
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