It has happend to enough people I know. I know after my mum died, SS kept sending me her check for 11 months. Then I got a letter saying my dead mother owed it back to them.
Of course, I just went in and showed them the checks, uncashed, and they cleared it up in like 30 seconds.
It happens a lot. I know of a lady on food stamps, I worked with last summer, she had a temp job then the aid office said, like six month later, she shouldn’t have gotten them for the month she worked and then reduced her future benefits by $25 a month till she repaid what she got for that month.
Sometimes it takes awhile for records to catch up.
I know in Illinois, you can go after people for unemployment claims up to two years after they paid you. By that I mean if you can prove the person filed a claim and it involved fraud or them lying, the company can appeal and the state goes after that person to get the unemployment back.
I know I worked in H/R in the late 90s the first thing I did was review the unemployment claims and the ones I felt had no basis or potential for fraud, I appealed and we won with two of the appeals, so those people had to pay the state back their unemployment money.
That’s government for you