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Would you shop them?

(91 Posts)
hercules Tue 27-Apr-04 21:45:30

Dh's cousin who has a wife and 3 kids is frauding the benefit system (99.9 sure).

They were renting privately then he "hit" her after 15 years of marriage which resulted in him being arrested and her with kids going to a b& b where he joined them.
She was given a large house where he also lived. About one year later they "bought" a large house despite only him working on a low wage and the house being at least £250,000.
They have lots of money now, bought new people carrier, big tv etc and she has no intentions of going to work.
We couldnt work out how they managed it as they are on a far less income than we are but we struggle.
They will not give out their land line number and when dh did get it from his aunt his wife answered it and not realisign it was dh said her husband didnt live there. Her husband then phoned dh bakc and saidhe'd been on the toilet.
Dh's aunt today said to him why dont we calim single parent benefit and get a house, that it is possible to claim single parent benefit and get your mortgage paid by claiming to rent from someone.
Dh explained why we wouldnt do that and realised that is what his cousin is gdoing. Dh wouldnt dream of shopping them but I have to say it does annoy me as we work so hard and pay lots of taxes but they do have 3 kids and I would hate tobe responsible for the parents being sent to prison.
It does irritate me that they are taking advantage of a system meant for people in need and i tell myself that it sets a poor example to their kids.
What would you do?

sexgoddess Tue 27-Apr-04 21:54:29

Very tricky Hercules. A friend of mine's dh buys houses to rent out. He usually puts a bathroom etc in and gets a man he knows to be claiming benefits to do the houses up with him and pays him wages. Last year this friend's husband bought a house for his "mate" to live in as he claims housing benefit. His mate is doing it up and paying a very nice sum (via benefits) to my friend's husband - and he's a Policeman!!!!

It does annoy me to hear of people just scrounging - I have nothing against anyone who needs benefits etc but I feel your dh's cousins are basically sticking their fingers up at "the system".

Don't think I could shop them though but it might be worth telling them a scare story to make them think twice.

boingyzebra Tue 27-Apr-04 22:03:05

These stories really annoy me. The social welfare system in this country is generous enough -- there's no good reason for people to resort to these frauds.
Don't know what I'd do for sure, Hercules, but I'd be jolly tempted to turn them in.

Freckle Tue 27-Apr-04 22:08:25

But *you* wouldn't be responsible for the parents going to prison. *They* would because they are commiting a crime. If they decided to run their electricity off your meter without telling you, would you shop them then? Because this is what they are doing. Stealing money which doesn't belong to them - and we are the ones who are paying that money through our taxes.

If they weren't related to your dh, would you shop them? If you don't then you are colluding in their crime.

I know it's very easy to type that and a much harder thing indeed to actually do it, but you have to live with your conscious. You'll feel bad if you don't because you know you really should, but you'll also feel bad if you do. Rock and a hard place spring to mind.

maisystar Tue 27-Apr-04 22:08:42

im on benefits as am single parent and have chosen to stay at home with ds now 3.6. however i dont particularly like being on benefits because people tend to think you are scrounging. unfortunately it is people who defraud the system like this who cause this reputation. i too would be tempted to shop them. is there any reson ie disability, depression etc why they could be doing this?

maisystar Tue 27-Apr-04 22:10:12

also if you did shop them they wouldnt go to prison but would have to repay the money theyd claimed dishonestly + possibly interest

hercules Tue 27-Apr-04 22:12:53

Good point about colluding ie knowing and doing nothing.
All their children are at school and the wife has worked before during school hours but gave up when she "became" a single parent. It feels wrong to shop them but wrong not to.

cuppy Tue 27-Apr-04 22:21:37

Briliantly put Freckle!

My dh and I just had 1st dd and until then both worked full time(im now on ml) and it really pisses me off to see families on benefits who can afford much better stuff than us.

Although we should have a system to help people , this country makes it easy for them to claim benefits as sometimes people get more money claiming than they do from a jobs salary.

nightowl Tue 27-Apr-04 22:26:41

Maybe im a nasty b***h but id probably shop them. i cant stand it that dishonest scroungers always get priority over people that do an honest days really does annoy me when the rest of us work bloody hard and run ourselves into the ground to pay for them.

maisystar Tue 27-Apr-04 22:31:01

just out of interest does that include all benefits claimants or just fraudulent ones?

sorry dont want to sound stroppy but am SO defensive about being on benefits, hate it

boingyzebra Tue 27-Apr-04 22:37:37

Yeah, but Cuppy -- maybe that's the fault of a low-wages culture (that people can't make work pay), rather than blaming them for giving up and just living on benefits rather than trying to get a job that won't give them a decent standard of living?

That said, with CTC and WFTC, etc., working really should pay, no reason to resort to fraudulent claims.

tallulah Tue 27-Apr-04 22:50:03

I'd shop them. Not only are they stealing from people paying tax, they are also taking money from people who genuinely need to claim. It also teaches their children that it's OK to do it, & it just continues.

Levanna Tue 27-Apr-04 22:56:59

I know a couple who are doing a very similar thing. She started to claim benefits during late pregnancy, and after their baby was born, they got married. She never changed her claim so is still claiming as a single parent. I was surprised when she let it slip, I couldn't believe that they can get away with it....not with a marriage certificate floating around! Anyway, they do. He earns quite well too. I wouldn't dream of 'shopping them'. Yes, they probably do do better than myself and DH (who works extremely hard). In fact, almost certainly do, but, each to their own.

beansprout Tue 27-Apr-04 22:58:53

Dp has paid maintenance to his ex for 12 years (his dd is 16 now), and his ex has always claimed benefit on the basis that she doesn't get a penny from him. The CSA have now got involved and dp is about to get a bill for 1000's of pounds. He won't tell them the truth though (that he has basically always paid for everything his dd needs) and our first is due later this year.

I'll have to go back to work after a very few months while his ex has still never worked. In the mean time dsd makes comments about "proper"parents staying at home, as she knows I will have to go back to work!!


nightowl Tue 27-Apr-04 23:01:44

oh hope that wasnt my post that upset you maisystar, i was referring to fraudulent claims

maisystar Tue 27-Apr-04 23:11:00

is cool was being mrs defensive- just cant understand the mindset of someone who thinks it is ok to do this. they, and others like them, are taking the p*ss.

ScotsBird Tue 27-Apr-04 23:17:01

i would say shop 'em, but then remembered that a colleague of dh and his partner are doing exactly the same thing - she told me one day and was really secretive about it so obviously knows it is wrong. His name isnt on his dd's birth certificate and he has to pack up and ship out each time the house is visited by the dss. Makes me sick but obviosly not sick enough to do anything about it - hmmm, am off to bed to mull it over ....

nightowl Tue 27-Apr-04 23:22:57

i agree, it is taking the p**s because benefit is there for people who geniunely need it...not people who are just out to rip everyone off, they're the ones that cause others to be tarred with the same brush unfortunatly.

MeanBean Wed 28-Apr-04 00:07:06

I'm probably being very controversial here, but I can't understand why everyone is getting so excited about this couple. It is actually very difficult to defraud the benefit system - I know, I was entitled to benefit a couple of years ago and didn't manage to claim it because the forms are so misleading and the advice that you get is always wrong - so if this couple are defrauding, chances are that they will only do it for a very short time and it is a flash in the pan compared to the amount of tax evasion that is going on. Yet nobody seems to summon up the sheer bile against rich tax evaders (who offset their cleaners and Cafe lattes against tax) that they do against poor dole scrounders. And if anyone thinks that if this couple (and others like them) stopped defrauding the benefit system, the people who are actually entitled to benefits would get an amount which accorded them basic human dignity, then they must be very naive. I would be very careful about whether shopping a couple like this would be done from motives of principle, or just resentment that for the time being, they appear to have a better car and TV than you.

nightowl Wed 28-Apr-04 00:32:32

I know as do others that nothing will ever change but surely no-one can condone this? Its dishonest and yes, i would be resentful of people who had better material possessions than me if i had worked for mine and theirs were obtained dishonestly. I feel the same about ANY kind of deception...its not just benefits.

robinw Wed 28-Apr-04 06:27:20

message withdrawn

Freckle Wed 28-Apr-04 07:23:18

I don't think anyone is getting excited about this couple, as such. A question was asked, and we all replied. I'm sure if a similar question were posed regarding someone evading tax, you'd get a similar response. It's not as if we're against dole scroungers (as in fraudulent claims) but not against tax evaders.

misdee Wed 28-Apr-04 07:40:26

that does sound very dodgey to me. I'd ask the aunt what exactly is going on, she may know something. are you aure that one of them isnt on DLA or anything. that boost incomes a lot and if they get mobility would explain the car. not trying to make excuses but trying to see how they can be doing this. the forms for benefits confuse the hell out of me. are you sure they arent just renting a larger place or have they def got a mortage on it?

i'm sorry that people on benefits who can afford mroe than u annoys you cuppy. my family gets a fair amount of benefits as dh and dd1 are both on DLA so it boost everything up. we cant understand how we can be better off this way than b4 we were both working full-time, but we are. in some ways i hate living like this as the stigma attached with benefits (they are gonna hate us more when dh gets his new mobility car as well), but i know its the best way for us atm.

hercules Wed 28-Apr-04 08:56:48

I realise the forms are tricky but i would say that they know enough about the benefit system and certain people to be able to pull something like this off. It was obviously planned from the start. They are getting their mortgage paid plus single parent benefits, plus his wage on top.
Yes, I am resentful and yes it goes against all my principles.
I know that dhs aunt wont give further info.
They seem tbh very aware of how to play the system and i'm not sure how they would be found out unless someone shopped them.

hercules Wed 28-Apr-04 08:58:04

Def no on dla.

He earns around £20,000 , 3 kids, she doesnt work and they have a house for £250,000 and lots of money.

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