‘Jobseekers’ lying to employment agency

Many among Sweden’s growing ranks of unemployed are lying to the national employment agency about their efforts to look for new jobs in order to retain their unemployment benefits.

'Jobseekers' lying to employment agency

In a random check at six different locations around the country, Sweden’s National Public Employment Agency (Arbetsförmedlingen) found that between 20 and 25 percent of those checked had not sought the jobs they had claimed, Sveriges Radio reports.

The checks, which were carried out during the last quarter of 2008, confirm a research report from last spring which found that 25 percent of those who said they were looking for work were not in fact doing so.

Leif Tallskog, head of unemployment insurance for the agency, thinks follow-ups ought to intensify to ensure that people receiving unemployment benefits are really looking for new jobs.

In order to receive unemployment benefits, the unemployed in Sweden are required to demonstrate to the agency they are in fact seeking jobs recommended to them by the agency.

Those who leave faulty information risk losing having their benefits payments reduced or taken away altogether.

Tallskog thinks that random checks ought to be carried out nationwide, but a formal decision has yet to be taken on the matter.