Overpayments and Fraud
What is the Treasury Offset Program and why is my federal income tax return being withheld?
A: The Treasury Offset Program (TOP) is used to collect delinquent debts owed to Federal agencies and states in accordance with Federal law. Federal payments, such as Federal Tax refunds, are used in whole or in part to offset delinquent debts that qualify for collection by offset. If a claimant’s IRS refund was offset, the funds were used to pay the delinquent, outstanding debt that was incurred from the improper collection of unemployment benefits.
If you have an outstanding overpayment balance, it may be subject to submission to the Treasury Offset Program (TOP) of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Monthly statements are sent by the Nebraska Department of Labor (NDOL) advising of the debt owed and indicating that NDOL will submit your debt to the IRS for offset of your future Federal Income Tax refund(s). The IRS charges a fee of $15.88 for each offset transaction.
The TOP offset process is defined under 26 USC 6402(f) and Title 31CFR 285.8. The IRS is not required to send you further notice of the TOP offset program when reducing your refund to pay off your debt balance.
If you have further questions about why there was an offset against your federal income tax refund, you may contact Benefit Payment Control at (402) 471-2865 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Does an overpayment mean I owe money?
A: Yes. If you receive any unemployment benefits for which you are not eligible, you will be required to repay those benefits. If benefits were paid to you in error, you will receive a notice stating the amount you were overpaid and why you were not eligible for the benefits. You have the right to appeal the determination by following the instructions on the bottom of the form.
How do I avoid collection activity against me?
You can avoid collection activities by either repaying the debt in full or remitting regular, monthly payments.
How can I have an overpayment on my claim when I filed only last week?
In the past you may have received unemployment benefits for which you were not eligible; Benefit Payment Control will recover the overpaid unemployment benefits from your current benefits.
Why are my Nebraska state taxes being withheld?
If you (or your spouse) have an outstanding liability with this agency, your Nebraska state income tax refund may be withheld and applied to this debt.
My debt was discharged in bankruptcy. Why am I not receiving any benefits?
In order to receive your benefits you must contact Benefit Payment Control to advise them of your current unemployment status and provide them with your bankruptcy case details.