Employment Law Questions? Ask an Employment Lawyer.
Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you.
To qualify for MA UI benefits you have to be able and ready for work and looking for work.If you were out of the country they can reclaim the benefits if they were paid for that time period.This is really an overpayment not fraud.From what you present there was no intent to hide or fraud here at all.
You should consider discussing repayment here, you are now due benefits and have returned.Again you did not hide this information and should be eligible.There may be a penalty period to recoup payments but eventually you should again receive them.
You can ask for a hardship overpayment waiver, here is how to do so..
I am so sorry you are having to go through all of this.Please do not despair.You may be able to seek a waiver of repayment.I do not see fraud here, no intent to do so.You should report it when you go out of country to avoid future problems.