When I think of welfare fraud, I mostly think of Alberta’s AISH program, which assures income for the severely handicapped. Certain people who can’t walk or who are mentally incapacitated very easily qualify for the program, because they’re pretty much the entire reason the program exists. We want to make sure that the weakest members of society have enough to exist, because that’s what rich societies do. If you don’t agree with that, you might be a bastard.
Related: Here’s how to retire super early. Just suckle at the teat of the government. No, I’m not scamming the system. I’m changing the definition of retirement. Stupid.
In Alberta, welfare fraud is committed by getting yourself a fake disability, using that fake disability to get a doctor’s note saying you can’t work any sort of physical job any longer, and getting on AISH. Even though you’re free to make an extra $800 in wages and not get your $1588 in AISH earnings clawed back, most everyone just takes their $19k per year and runs. I know AISH people who have coupled up with other AISH people, sharing cheap digs so more of their scratch can go towards fun.
But anyway, Alberta’s AISH scammers look like a bunch of chumps and/or chumpettes compared to the king and queen of welfare fraud, Colin Chisholm III and his wife, Andrea Chisholm. Because of course he’s named Colin Chisholm the third. From Reuters:
The Chisholms are each charged with a felony count of wrongfully obtaining public assistance in excess of $35,000, the highest threshold under Minnesota law. Andrea Chisholm was charged on Thursday.
They bought a $1.2 million yacht, The Andrea Aras, in 2005 shortly after applying for welfare benefits in Minnesota, according to complaints against them. They have been accused of living on the yacht in the area of Palm Beach, Florida, for 28 months while lying about living in Minnesota.
I guess the name “Screw You, Minnesota” would have been a little too obvious, huh? Also, he named the yacht after his wife? Colin screwed up bad at some point.
Colin Chisholm was the chief executive officer of a satellite television and broadband services company, his wife bred and sold championship dogs, and over a seven-year period the couple deposited more than $2.6 million in bank accounts they did not report on applications for welfare benefits, according to the complaint.
They have lived in luxury homes in suburban Minneapolis, driven a $30,000 Lexus and also collected welfare benefits in Florida, the complaint said.
Here’s what I don’t understand. These people must have a net worth of $10 or $20 million. Why bother committing welfare fraud if you have a net worth of 8 figures? How is it worth their time?
We’d all like an extra $35 grand. But this couple might actually go to jail. It’s a pretty egregious move to commit welfare fraud if you’re that rich. Nobody really cares when you’re poor and scamming the system, because the poor are pretty easily forgiven. On account of that they’re poor. But when you’re rich and are at that level of scamming? The state is gonna make an example out of you.
Maybe Minnesota is just mad because it took them 7 years to catch onto these people.