You can tell a bureaucrat ranked them as not very funny. Apparently these are reasons given by scammers when confronted by UK authorities.
Last Updated 11:46 29/05/2011
A list of the top ten most “ridiculous” excuses used by benefit cheats has been published by ministers.
They range from the “I wasn’t using the ladders to clean windows, I carried them for therapy for my bad back”, to “It wasn’t me claiming benefits, it was my identical twin”.
Others include “We don’t live together, he just comes each morning to fill up his flask”.
Ministers say they are not amused, pointing out fraudulent benefit claims cost taxpayers £1.6bn a year.
“Benefit fraud is no joke, and yet our investigators are routinely dealing with bare-faced cheek and ridiculous excuses for stealing money from the taxpayer,” said welfare reform minister David Freud.
He added: “Universal Credit (to come into effect in two years’ time) will simplify and automate the benefits system. This will make it much easier to catch people who make false claims.”
However, the chief executive of disability charity Scope warned against pigeon-holing people without jobs as benefits cheats.
“Stereotyping people who claim incapacity benefit won’t help them find work,” said Richard Hawkes.
“The Government really has to stop over-simplifying the debate on welfare and using unusual fraud cases to support changes which could have a serious and negative impact on the lives of hundreds of thousands of disabled people.”
Here is the full list of the most ridiculous excuses used by benefit cheats:
:: “We don’t live together he just comes each morning to fill up his flask”.
:: “I wasn’t using the ladders to clean windows, I carried them for therapy for my bad back.”
:: “I had no idea my wife was working! I never noticed her leaving the house twice a day in a fluorescent jacket and a Stop Children sign.”
:: “My wallet was stolen so someone must have been using my identity, I haven’t been working”.
:: “I didn’t know I was still on benefit.”
:: “I didn’t declare my savings because I didn’t save them, they were given to me.”
:: “He lives in a caravan in the drive, we’re not together.”
:: “He does come here every night and leave in the morning and although he has
no other address I don’t regard him as living here.”
:: “It wasn’t me working, it was my identical twin.
:: “I wasn’t aware my wife was working because her hours of work coincided with the times I spent in the garden shed.”