PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING BEFORE SUBMITTING A FRAUD REPORTING FORM. THIS INFORMATION WILL HELP YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT INFORMATION HELPS WITH OUR INVESTIGATIVE EFFORTS.
We understand that in many cases, people wish to report fraud but would like to remain anonymous, however this does provide some challenges. If you are submitting a report anonymously, please review the tips below to help you in submitting an allegation of fraud. Generally, provide as much information as you have available and consider including:
Detailed information about the person involved in the fraud, such as the person’s full name and address (city and state), current position or title, current or previous employing agency or department, facility name, work address and current employment status (active, inactive, retired, disabled). For retirees, please consider providing information such as the retirement date, current address, approximate age, information pertaining to prior state service credit and employment, and if applicable date of death.
Detailed information pertaining to the alleged fraud. Please provide any detail related to falsified or fraudulent applications, forms, or certifications provided by the individual alleged to defraud the retirement system. Include any information related to falsified or manipulated earnings or service credit.
Information on when and where the fraud took place.
Who else would have knowledge of the fraud (coworkers, neighbors, employers).
Information on ineligible or improper benefits received. Include information such as ineligible or fraudulent payees, dependents, beneficiaries, or survivors.
Any additional detail or support you have to substantiate the alleged fraud or help further our efforts.
For allegations of disability fraud, please consider providing information pertaining to the falsified or feigned disability and any observed activities which may not be consistent with the disability. Include any known outside employment and if known, please include the name of the employer, approximate work address or contact information, and type of work performed by the disabled.
SERS is committed to fighting benefit fraud to protect the benefits owed to our members and retirees. Attempting to defraud SERS carries serious consequences including prison time, fines, and termination of SERS benefits. Each convictable fraud offense is punishable as a Class 3 Felony. SERS will do everything within its powers to investigate fraud internally and to work with governmental agencies, State and local law enforcement, and state’s attorneys in uncovering and prosecuting fraudulent actions that impact the retirement system.
Please note that SERS does not investigate reports of fraud, waste, and abuse that pertains to matters outside of the benefits that SERS administers. Other governmental entities, including the Illinois Office of the Executive Inspector General (OEIG), have been established to investigate allegations of fraud, waste or abuse occurring within State of Illinois agencies under the Governor and such complaints should be directed to the appropriate agency.
We provide multiple methods for reporting alleged fraud that impacts SERS. Reports of fraud can be submitted by phone, mail, email, or fax.
It is very important that you provide as much information as possible about the alleged fraud. The more you tell us, the better the chance we can effectively investigate the allegation.
If you are submitting an allegation of fraud, please consider completing the SERS Fraud Reporting Form. This helps us gather the most information by providing you with considerations on what to include. It is not necessary to complete this form to submit a report or allegation.
What we investigate
Generally, any fraudulent pension and benefit claims, payments or participation in the State Employees’ Retirement System.
Allegations involving a member or retiree that falsifies, forges, misrepresents or alters any official record of the State Retirement Systems for personal gain. This includes falsified or forged birth and death certificates, medical reports, continuing eligibility certifications, and various benefit applications just to name a few.
Allegations of continuing to cash or receive retirement payments of a deceased retiree or benefit recipient.
Allegations of salary or service credit manipulations to defraud the retirement system.
Instances when a member receives SERS disability benefits while concealing other work activity. This includes any self-employment wages, unreported wages earned in the public sector, and wages earned outside of the State of Illinois’ borders which exceed the allowable threshold.
Falsified or feigned disability claims which result in improper disability benefits administered by SERS. This includes any direct misrepresentation, falsification, forgery or alteration of disability medical reports, certifications and other official documents.
The misuse of benefits when acting as a representative payee or power of attorney.
Allegations of theft or misuse of personal information of SERS members and retirees. This includes fraudulently misrepresenting yourself or attempting to impersonate SERS or one of its employees for personal or financial gain.
Any improper handling or reporting of money or financial transactions in which SERS is involved or impacted.
Any illegal activity, dishonest or fraudulent act that impacts the State Employees’ Retirement System and the benefits it administers.
What does SERS do with reports or allegations of fraud?
SERS Internal Audit collects each report of alleged fraud. Working with SERS staff, each report is reviewed to determine the course of action necessary to properly investigate, review or dismiss. SERS will not provide any follow-up correspondence unless additional information is needed to further our efforts. Under no circumstance will SERS provide you with the “status” of actions taken on the allegation.