COLUMBUS, Ohio (WJW) – The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) says it has recovered $397.5 million in fraudulent unemployment benefits.

Ohio created a team in 2021 to combat unemployment fraud.

“Criminals hit Ohio and the rest of the nation hard with fraudulent claims, taking taxpayer dollars and slowing efforts to get money to those in need,” ODJFS Director Matt Damschroder said.

ODJFS shared potentially fraudulent transactions with financial institutions and worked with federal law enforcement to conduct seizures.

“The new reality is that we are in a constant battle with criminals trying to scam the system and interfere with Ohioans in legitimate need of assistance,” Damschroder said.