Pennsylvania settles lawsuit against IBM over jobless claims

Regional News

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration said Tuesday that it settled a lawsuit against International Business Machines Corp. after suing the company four years ago and accusing it of failing to deliver on a contract for an updated system of processing unemployment compensation claims.

In a brief statement, the Department of Labor and Industry said it settled and resolved the lawsuit “following an extensive discovery period and exchange of expert reports and opinions,” and revealed no terms other than saying that IBM “acknowledged no liability or wrongdoing.”

It did not release a copy of the agreement or say whether it was filed in Dauphin County court, where the lawsuit had been filed.

The lawsuit, originally filed in 2017, said the technology and consulting giant was paid $170 million on a 2006 contract, but had delivered a failed project by the time the state let the contract expire in 2013, late and over budget.

At the time, Armonk, New York-based IBM had said the state’s claims had no merit. It declined to comment Tuesday.

Pennsylvania has come under withering criticism for its handling of record levels of unemployment claims during the pandemic. It instituted a new claims filing system in June, but that has done little to stem criticism of unanswered phones, long wait times, unpaid claims and difficulty getting help.

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