ATLANTA — A metro Atlanta woman said scammers looking to cash in on unemployment benefits are preying on her husband.
Cheryl Robinson’s husband, Mark Robinson, is in the hospital right now fighting for his life.
Channel 2′s Michael Seiden first spoke to the family last week about their inability to see each other in what might be the last moments of Mark Robinson’s life.
The 48-year-old father of four has been battling heart problems for more than a year now and is in the intensive care unit with congestive heart failure. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, his wife and children haven’t been able to see him.
To make matters worse, on Saturday, Cheryl Robinson got a call from her mother-in-law after she found a letter in her mailbox from the Department of Labor. The letter -- which was legitimate -- stated that Mark Robinson’s unemployment benefits had kicked in on May 17 based on his job in 2019. According to the letter, Mark Robinson made $655,000 a year in 2019.
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The problem? Mark Robinson hasn’t been employed since 2018 when he worked as a pizza delivery man -- and he certainly wasn’t making six figures.
It’s likely that someone got his information and set up a fraudulent claim in his name, but Cheryl Robinson said she has no idea how they got the information. She said that she’s afraid it could potentially impact her husband’s other government benefits, which include Medicare.
“If you realized what was going on with him, that would be the most awful thing you could do,” Cheryl Robinson said. “It could cause him to lose his medical, which means he has no resources.”
Cheryl Robinson said that she’s already gone ahead and filed a report with the Department of Labor, but the fraudulent claim couldn’t come at a worse time.
Right now, Mark Robinson’s only hope for survival lies in a major operation. Doctors are trying to implant a heart pump, but at this point they are concerned he may not survive the operation.
The family has called on hospital officials to change their policies to allow patients to see family members dealing with unthinkable circumstances. Mark Robinson fears he may die alone in the hospital without his wife there to comfort him.
“I married her at 16 years old. Needed a permission slip to marry, and we’ve been married for 32 years faithfully all the way through,” Mark Robinson said. “It’s so unfair that I’m sitting, going like I’m going, and I can’t see my wife at the last moment.”
Cox Media Group