Wedding Woes

This person is a shitty friend, to you, the other guy, or both.

Dear Prudence,

I have a friend of a friend who faked a work injury to get workman’s compensation (he received over $100,000) and was able to convince a judge he was unable to work due to this injury and now receives Social Security. He was working a desk job for less than a year and claimed because of this, he is in too much pain to walk and can no longer work. He doesn’t like to work and previously lived with a woman who paid for everything. Now the government is paying him.  The problem is that he is not injured, sick, or disabled. He is in his 30s, fully mobile, and admitted to my friend that he lied just to get the money. When my friend told me about this a few years ago, I assumed someone else would turn him in (he told a few other close friends). But no one has. My friend told me not to tell anyone and he would be really upset with me if he found out I did it. I work in social services and see people every day who actually need help.  It really upsets me that this friend is so dishonest. I am not sure if I should let it go or turn him in?

—Friend of a Friend’s Fraud

Re: This person is a shitty friend, to you, the other guy, or both.

  • "You want me to continue to let this guy abuse a system because he's lazy?  Exactly what is the upside for me if I keep up the charade?" 

  • I would turn him in/report him I think.  LW seems reasonably positive that this guy is faking it and seems to be in a good enough friendship position to assess that rationally. 
  • It doesn't sound like LW knows the 'faker' and is going off information being disseminated by this 3rd party.  I'm not sure LW reporting this holds much water.  I'm sure there has to be some sort of concrete proof, documentation, paper trail, etc. 

    What I don't understand is why this person continues to consider themselves a friend of someone who's behavior they find so objectionable.  And I also don't understand why they keep feeding this information to LW, when it's clearly something that upsets LW.  

    I sincerely hope LW's 'friend' isn't slandering someone who actually does have a disability and needs the income to live. 
  • I need more information to make my ruling.

    Bottom line, the LW should report it if they have first hand information that this person is not actually disabled.  But if the main/only evidence is "my friend told me he lied and is faking the disability", then I don't think the LW should even bother because they really don't know anything about the situation.  Plus, I would assume (and hope) that whatever government agency investigates fraud claims wouldn't take secondhand information seriously either.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • I will say my opinion is based on the LW having that info.  Without it I agree you don't report if you can't confirm it yourself.  The rumor mill sucks. 
  • If friend of friend is faking- it’s super wrong and he shouldn’t be doing it. I think you should consider friend to report him if friend knows that friend is faking it. 

    But if friend doesn’t know this guys medical situation then all of this is rumor and speculation. What happens if he’s genuinely unable to work and you report that he’s abusing benefits and he loses them? Then consequences are serious here too. 
  • Anonymous letter? An investigation should  be done so the proper people can investigate. 

  • Sounds a lot like the gossip tree, especially when you add in that he doesn't like to work and previously lived with a woman who paid his way. Maybe dude is faking. It seems quite unlikely that he completely faked an injury and a disability to the point that he cannot work a desk job and was able to convince both worker's comp and SSD investigations without any evidence, yet he goes about telling all his friends that it's fake. 

    I'm more inclined to believe it's an invisible disability or he's not "disabled enough" for some people coupled with some unkind busy-bodies. 
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