It’s tax filing season, which means sorting through forms and paperwork.

This year, preparing to file may take an unexpected twist for people who suddenly discover they have a Form 1099-G, listing the unemployment benefits they received – only they never applied for or received the benefit.

The number of fraudulent unemployment claims have spiked as states have rushed to send out legitimate unemployment benefits since the pandemic took hold. One estimate puts losses at $36 billion.

If you find that someone claimed unemployment benefits in your name, inform your employer and contact your state unemployment agency immediately.

Then, visit www.identitytheft.gov and follow the guidance specific to your situation. And make a plan to monitor your credit report moving forward – for free – via www.annualcreditreport.com.

Be a fraud fighter! If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam.

Visit the AARP Fraud Watch Network at www.aarp.org/fraudwatch network or call the AARP Fraud Watch Network Helpline at 1-877-908-3360 to report a scam or get help if you’ve fallen victim.

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