VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Nga Nguyen calls it terrifying. “I’ve been losing sleep,” she said in a Wednesday afternoon interview with 10 On Your Side.

“I cannot get anyone at the (Virginia Employment Commission) to help me.”

Nguyen was laid off in 2020 from Arthritis Consultants of Tidewater where she’d perform ultrasounds.

“We work with low-immune system patients and they did not want us to risk the patients getting sick with Covid,” she said, so she got laid off and collected unemployment thru June of 2020.

It was a done deal until late June of this year when she got a notice from the VEC.

“They’re stating that I owe $6,000 of overpayment with no explanation whatsoever.”

And then she got another notice to make a bad situation worse.

“And now they’re doubling it to a little over $11,000,” Nguyen said.

She has a special needs daughter, making it impossible to even consider coming up with that kind of cash.

“She’s currently five years old, she’s autistic. She needs full care. I’m a single mom and I live paycheck-to-paycheck and I am completely terrified of being homeless with my daughter.”

Nguyen is back to work with the medical practice part-time, and says her employer will speak on her behalf – if only she could get the VEC to listen.

“My company is stating if the VEC will contact them they will verify that they did lay me off in 2020 during the Covid pandemic. Every day I’m in fear – what will happen? What would my daughter and I do if we had to pay this back?” she said.

10 On Your Side will contact the VEC with Nguyen’s story to try to get some sort of resolution. If you have a problem with unemployment contact us at