Are Statutory Penalties for Overpayment of Unemployment Insurance Benefits Dischargeable in Chapter 13?

By Karin N. Amyx, Staff Attorney, Laurie B. Williams, Standing Chapter 13 Trustee - Wichita

State agencies often file non-dischargeability complaints asserting that debtors fraudulently received unemployment insurance (“UI”) benefit payments. These debts can include interest, fees and stiff statutory penalties. Debts, fees and penalties deemed non-dischargeable pursuant to § 523(a)(2) are not discharged in Chapter 7 or Chapter 13.1 However, if a statutory penalty is deemed non-dischargeable exclusively under § 523(a)(7), it may be dischargeable in Chapter 13 – depending on who you ask. Contrary decisions coming out of . . .

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