Kokua Line: Can the State forgive an overpayment that blocks my unemployment claim?

Qquestion: My unemployment claim is blocked due to a past overpayment. I am back to work but owed for weeks while I was eligible. Does the state ever cancel these amounts or can they deduct them from unpaid weeks? Everything to advance my claim. It is not a huge amount but is leaving my request pending. I bet so much on credit cards because I didn’t get paid in the weeks I should have been. I don’t know what caused the overpayment.

Reply: You are referring to being paid more than you were entitled to for a given week or weeks in Hawaii’s unemployment benefit system.

Yes, overpayments are sometimes forgiven, when there is no fraud and the error is not the fault of the claimant; decisions are taken on a case-by-case basis, after arbitration. Repayment plans are also a possibility, depending on specific circumstances, according to the state’s Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

Hawaii claimants whose accounts are on hold due to an overpayment should schedule an appointment with the DLIR to review their options, department director Anne Perreira-Eustaquio said on Wednesday in the Spotlight Hawaii series. Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

Go to labor.hawaii.gov/ui/appointments to make an appointment. Reservations are made online for an appointment to be held by phone.

Potential fraud is investigated on “every overpayment that is found,” she said. If no fraud is found, the department moves on to consider future payments and “maybe forgive the overpayment,” she said. Perreira-Eustaquio was asked how many overpayments were written off during the pandemic, but did not give an estimate.

DLIR’s information website, hawaiiunemploymentinfo.com, states that for regular unemployment insurance claimants, “once it has been determined that you have been overpaid and are legally obligated to repay the amount, Unemployment Insurance will attempt to offset the amount of the overpayment with current or future eligible entitlements. weeks of benefits. A claimant with an unpaid overpayment balance at the end of the month would receive a monthly bill until the amount is settled, the website says, noting that all this only applies to regular insurance claimants. -unemployment.

Q: It’s been three days since the City and County of Honolulu unveiled their new golf tee time reservation system, and it has yet to work or properly. During the past three days, I have called the new Ala Wai Golf Course phone number only to receive the message of a system error. Why didn’t they test this system before trying to implement it? … Also, the old phone system will not allow you to get a start while they work on “bugs” with the new system. That means no one has been able to book a tee time for next week Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – a loss of revenue for the city and county of Honolulu. This is typical government inefficiency at its best. Please take a look at this to see how close they are to fixing this new reservation system.

A: The new system has been tested in advance, but problems have arisen during its commissioning which have been or are being fixed, said city spokesman Tim Sakahara. Here is his full answer to your question:

“The upgrade to the city’s tee time reservation system is a welcome improvement that adds efficiency and helps improve the reservation experience for golfers. The long-awaited new technology was tested several times before being available to the public on Monday, but encountered some technical difficulties. The app issue was resolved within a day, and golfers can book tee times up to six days in advance. We appreciate everyone’s patience during the transition phase. The Golf division continues to monitor the program and adjust it if necessary.

For more information, go to honolulu.gov/des/golf and click on your preferred course in the column on the left of the page.

Write to Kokua Line at Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or send an email to [email protected]

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