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to report MIL.

(57 Posts)
JunkCrumpet Thu 01-Oct-20 11:21:54

We're NC with MIL because she's evil. She's also a "therapist" - she offers "healing" of various kinds. She has no actual qualifications in anything that's in any way recognised by anyone. I'm not talking about hypnotherapy or aromatherapy or something "alternative" but with some surrounding evidence - I mean "I can talk to ghosts and ask them to remove your cancer" bullshit.
Now, MIL has a website where she advertises. She claims to have all these qualifications but it's things like "experienced in X" or "qualified to perform Y". She has a "Diploma in Suchnsuch" that her friend printed out for her. I think what she's doing is dangerous. She abused her children to the point that they're NC with her, she's a compulsive liar and very manipulative. She's also very money grabbing and uses people for money - she's been known to steal large amounts (thousands) from family members. She isn't DBS checked or insured and her business isn't registered. I also know she's paid in cash and also claiming jobseekers despite having this income.
I'm very worried that she'll victimise vulnerable people. I wouldn't be surprised if she were trying to manipulate or coerce money out of wealthy vulnerable people (especially men). I would also suspect that, especially with Covid, many people are afraid of going to NHS in case they catch Covid and so are seeking alternative treatments. If they believe what she's saying they could easily die from curable illnesses because they don't seek the proper help. I don't want her to get into trouble and I certainly don't want to be back in contact with her or too involved but it's nagging at me.
AIBU to report her? And, if I should report her, who do I even report her to? I don't think it's a criminal offence until someone actually gets hurt, the benefits fraud isn't the thing I'm really worried about, you can only report someone practising without a DBS check to their employer so self-employed people are off the hook (unless they actually commit another crime). Should I just butt out? I feel obliged to do something before someone gets hurt.

OP’s posts: |
SoddingWeddings Thu 01-Oct-20 11:26:26

Which professional memberships is she claiming to have? Some are protected in law, so it's a police matter. Others aren't, so you might want to contact trading standards.

If she's claiming qualifications she would need to offer a treatment (physiotherapy, chiropractic, counselling etc) it could be fraud - I once prosecuted a fraudulent gas fitter for that kind of thing.

What services is she offering on the website? Will she be hands on with anyone or is it psychic working through the Internet stuff?

You could alert the local paper to warn people off that way.

Purplewithred Thu 01-Oct-20 11:32:07

Other than the benefit fraud it's entirely possible she's not doing anything you can report to anyone. It's up to her clients to check her qualifications are valid. If she is claiming qualifications that are protected in law then that's different but it sounds as though she is claiming to have an Advanced Diploma in Woo in which case buyer beware.

Were these frauds and thefts reported to the police?

JunkCrumpet Thu 01-Oct-20 11:35:35

SoddingWeddings

Which professional memberships is she claiming to have? Some are protected in law, so it's a police matter. Others aren't, so you might want to contact trading standards.

If she's claiming qualifications she would need to offer a treatment (physiotherapy, chiropractic, counselling etc) it could be fraud - I once prosecuted a fraudulent gas fitter for that kind of thing.

What services is she offering on the website? Will she be hands on with anyone or is it psychic working through the Internet stuff?

You could alert the local paper to warn people off that way.

She's not claiming to have anything specific - that's half the problem. Her website says things like "I have undertaken extensive training in X" and "I am highly qualified at Y". Not "I have X qualification". She doesn't appear to use any protected term. She's running "healing" out of her house and offers an initial over-the-phone consultation. I know that she's claimed to cure cancer by removing tumours with her hands and things like that. I just feel like the wrong person under her influence could be in an awful situation.
It also appears to be a bit of a circle jerk situation. She "trains" her friends to do X type of healing and they, in return, teach her to do Y type of therapy. They then give each other certificates that they've made themselves and they're all very well qualified at doing nothing.
I feel like going to the paper is a bit too far. I don't want to embarrass her or make her a pariah. I'd just like her to stop.

OP’s posts: |
TheLovleyChebbyMcGee Thu 01-Oct-20 11:36:26

yanbu, but I'm not sure who you can report her to. The council for operating an unlicensed business? Not sure they will care. HMRC for the undeclared income?

A friend of mine does all sorts of reiki, angel healing, crystal healing. She goes on all sorts of courses and has "qualifications", she's paid a fortune for them too, so she's not making a living off it, but someone at the top of the chain must be well rich!!

JunkCrumpet Thu 01-Oct-20 11:39:26

Purplewithred

Other than the benefit fraud it's entirely possible she's not doing anything you can report to anyone. It's up to her clients to check her qualifications are valid. If she is claiming qualifications that are protected in law then that's different but it sounds as though she is claiming to have an Advanced Diploma in Woo in which case buyer beware.

Were these frauds and thefts reported to the police?

No, nothing was reported to the police to avoid the family drama. She stole around £12,000 from DH and used his information to take out loans in his name. Nothing was reported to the police as obviously it's easier to avoid her and it's worth losing the money for a quiet life and to remain on good terms with other family members. She's all cardigans and butter-wouldn't-melt anyway so it's unlikely the police would go far because she plays the victim so well.
I think you're correct that caveat emptor applies to Woo Diplomas but I just have an awful nagging feeling that I should do something or someone will get hurt.

OP’s posts: |
JunkCrumpet Thu 01-Oct-20 11:40:58

TheLovleyChebbyMcGee

yanbu, but I'm not sure who you can report her to. The council for operating an unlicensed business? Not sure they will care. HMRC for the undeclared income?

A friend of mine does all sorts of reiki, angel healing, crystal healing. She goes on all sorts of courses and has "qualifications", she's paid a fortune for them too, so she's not making a living off it, but someone at the top of the chain must be well rich!!

I think it's some kind of weird circular pyramid scheme. You teach other people how to heal and then, when they get no patients, you teach them how to teach how to heal.

OP’s posts: |
HopeClearwater Thu 01-Oct-20 11:41:55

a circle jerk situation

I wouldn’t use this phrase unless you are VERY sure of what it means ... shock

Asterion Thu 01-Oct-20 11:43:13

SoddingWeddings

Which professional memberships is she claiming to have? Some are protected in law, so it's a police matter. Others aren't, so you might want to contact trading standards.

If she's claiming qualifications she would need to offer a treatment (physiotherapy, chiropractic, counselling etc) it could be fraud - I once prosecuted a fraudulent gas fitter for that kind of thing.

What services is she offering on the website? Will she be hands on with anyone or is it psychic working through the Internet stuff?

You could alert the local paper to warn people off that way.

Anyone can call themselves a counsellor, or a healer. Or loads of other things that aren't regulated at all.

I'm not sure what you could report her for, or who to! Unless use of the word "qualified" is seen as protected, if she's using it in relation to a legally regulated profession.

Elsewyre Thu 01-Oct-20 11:44:30

JunkCrumpet

We're NC with MIL because she's evil. She's also a "therapist" - she offers "healing" of various kinds. She has no actual qualifications in anything that's in any way recognised by anyone. I'm not talking about hypnotherapy or aromatherapy or something "alternative" but with some surrounding evidence - I mean "I can talk to ghosts and ask them to remove your cancer" bullshit.
Now, MIL has a website where she advertises. She claims to have all these qualifications but it's things like "experienced in X" or "qualified to perform Y". She has a "Diploma in Suchnsuch" that her friend printed out for her. I think what she's doing is dangerous. She abused her children to the point that they're NC with her, she's a compulsive liar and very manipulative. She's also very money grabbing and uses people for money - she's been known to steal large amounts (thousands) from family members. She isn't DBS checked or insured and her business isn't registered. I also know she's paid in cash and also claiming jobseekers despite having this income.
I'm very worried that she'll victimise vulnerable people. I wouldn't be surprised if she were trying to manipulate or coerce money out of wealthy vulnerable people (especially men). I would also suspect that, especially with Covid, many people are afraid of going to NHS in case they catch Covid and so are seeking alternative treatments. If they believe what she's saying they could easily die from curable illnesses because they don't seek the proper help. I don't want her to get into trouble and I certainly don't want to be back in contact with her or too involved but it's nagging at me.
AIBU to report her? And, if I should report her, who do I even report her to? I don't think it's a criminal offence until someone actually gets hurt, the benefits fraud isn't the thing I'm really worried about, you can only report someone practising without a DBS check to their employer so self-employed people are off the hook (unless they actually commit another crime). Should I just butt out? I feel obliged to do something before someone gets hurt.

Is the cancer bit made up by you for emphasis or actually true?

Because the UK has specific and powerful laws about advertising anything as a treatment of cancer.

Its 100% illegal in any circumstance to advertise anything at all as treating or curing cancer to the uk public, carrys a prison sentence

picosandsancerre Thu 01-Oct-20 11:50:06

Your NC with this woman, just leave her too it. She is your DH mother and he is NC. I dont know why you feel the need to snoop around at her website. There are lots of flakes out there, folks that pay money to those claiming to speak to the dead. Leave her to it and move on

Sunnydaysstillhere Thu 01-Oct-20 11:54:16

Surely the police? Extorting money under false pretences....
And the benefits fraud line.... Screen shot her ads and send with your reports.

JunkCrumpet Thu 01-Oct-20 11:54:20

@Elsewyre "Is the cancer bit made up by you for emphasis or actually true?"
This is completely true but not in her advertising. She doesn't state specific conditions on her website (just says "a range of physical conditions" and phrases like that) but know from other family members and from before we were NC that she thinks she can cure cancer and has "cured" people (and animals). I have had cancer which is why I get so irate, I was caught very early and was very lucky but if I'd been hooked in by a quack and ignored genuine doctors then I could have died.

OP’s posts: |
GabsAlot Thu 01-Oct-20 11:58:36

if you want to report her do it for benefit fraud you wont get far with the other things

crosspelican Thu 01-Oct-20 12:01:54

In my business I cross paths with a lot of "healer" types, and people like your MIL aren't actually doing any harm, because it's HIGHLY unlikely she has any clients. Most of her interactions are probably, as you said, with her other similarly hapless friends.

Unless she has some hitherto-concealed knack for sales and online marketing, she is unlikely to make any headway.

Also, I don't know... the kind of person who goes to self-professed healer from down the road probably doesn't have anything life-threatening anyway. I have a strong suspicion that the kind of person who WOULD go to her because she believes fervently in that kind of stuff overlaps HEAVILY with the kind of person who turns up at A&E with 15 family members in tow for an earache.

AngelicInnocent Thu 01-Oct-20 12:02:07

Your best bet is to speak to your local trading standards office. They know exactly what is permitted as claimed qualifications etc and can take action if she is breaking any rules.

seayork2020 Thu 01-Oct-20 12:04:58

Benefit fraud i by guess, but the rest no idea what grounds or to who other than doing it because you don't like her but not sure how successful you will be or what you will achieve?

IntermittentParps Thu 01-Oct-20 12:06:24

Report her for the benefit fraud. With the woo healing shit, it is unfortunately caveat emptor. Although might be worth, as Angelic suggests, checking with Trading Standards just to be sure whether there's any guidelines etc she's breaking.

crosspelican Thu 01-Oct-20 12:07:22

I knew a woman whose ex-partner made her life hell. They had a baby and were homeless thanks to his exertions, and when she left him, he decided that he was so devoted to his calling as a witch, that he couldn't work so that he could remain available for healing sage cleanses and so on. So naturally, could not be expected to contribute to his child's care.

When she (reasonably) decided that as she was here illegally in the first place, she should just go home to her family instead of being here just so that Witch DeadbeatDad could see his child once in a blue moon (when he wasn't on call for witching, of course), he took her to court as an unfit mother and tried to get sole custody because he found out that as a homeless single parent he could get a flat.

As far as I know she was able to shake him off and go home with her baby. I hope she never had to see him again.

I don't have a huge amount of faith in people who call themselves professional healers.

TheLovleyChebbyMcGee Thu 01-Oct-20 12:07:28

It also appears to be a bit of a circle jerk situation. She "trains" her friends to do X type of healing and they, in return, teach her to do Y type of therapy. They then give each other certificates that they've made themselves and they're all very well qualified at doing nothing.

A bit of a cross post there! That's exactly what my friend does. Attends other peoples courses, pays a fortune for them, then holds her own and charges people. Its insane, but there must be one person who leads classes and doesn't attend any who makes all the money.

However, what gave us the biggest laugh was a course leader who encouraged their participants to buy crystals (from their shop obviously) to leave in nearby mystical woodland as offerings. I'd bet you anything the person would go and collect them after and resell them to the next lot of suckers. Its obscenely exploitative!

JunkCrumpet Thu 01-Oct-20 12:12:38

crosspelican

In my business I cross paths with a lot of "healer" types, and people like your MIL aren't actually doing any harm, because it's HIGHLY unlikely she has any clients. Most of her interactions are probably, as you said, with her other similarly hapless friends.

Unless she has some hitherto-concealed knack for sales and online marketing, she is unlikely to make any headway.

Also, I don't know... the kind of person who goes to self-professed healer from down the road probably doesn't have anything life-threatening anyway. I have a strong suspicion that the kind of person who WOULD go to her because she believes fervently in that kind of stuff overlaps HEAVILY with the kind of person who turns up at A&E with 15 family members in tow for an earache.

Your line of thought is what I also thought - she's definitely an over-dramatic, attention seeking hypochondriac. One reason her children are NC is because she spent their childhood telling them they had illnesses and allergies that they don't have. They had very low school attendance and were frequently being tested for things. But I've seen today that one of her "programmes" currently has nine people on it (each paying £3000). That's £27,000 for a three week healing programme. Obviously, the money isn't my major concern but I think people must be in a very vulnerable or desperate situation to spend money like that.

OP’s posts: |
countbackfromten Thu 01-Oct-20 12:15:38

If she is claiming she can cure or treat cancer she is breaking the cancer act and you can report her www.google.co.uk/amp/s/scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2016/02/19/the-1939-cancer-act/amp/

melissalou Thu 01-Oct-20 12:15:55

One hundred percent report this stealing piece of shit for benefit fraud.

As pp mentioned send screenshots of her website, they will do the rest grin

Derbee Thu 01-Oct-20 12:17:37

I think the benefit fraud would be a good starting point. Everything may crumble around that?

crosspelican Thu 01-Oct-20 12:18:27

Gosh. But I'm still sceptical. Lots of people have people on their £££ programs, but how many of those people actually paid the £££ and how many are there to give her a glowing testimonial when it's over? It's just that I know a self-professed witch doing something very similar, and I just don't buy for a MOMENT that all these people have actually handed over several thousand pounds to work with her.

But if someone IS handing over 3k for a 3 week healing program, they can afford it. And if they can't they're idiots, which isn't your problem.

Honestly, leave it be.

(She is such a classic "type" though! Is she anti-vaxx and COVID-is-a-government-hoax too?)

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