Utah woman ordered to pay back COVID unemployment benefits

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Court of Appeals has ordered a woman to pay back some of the unemployment benefits she received while waiting for the COVID-19 vaccine.

The woman was originally laid off when the pandemic hit and collected unemployment. She was offered a chance to go back to work, then declined until she was fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

But the court says the unidentified woman cannot claim all the unemployment benefits she collected because she was eligible to work and employees cannot refuse an offer of work while on unemployment.

While sympathetic to her situation during the pandemic, the court added that the woman did go back to work for a brief period of time before the vaccine. She’s been ordered to pay back about $8,000 to the state.


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