UK’s Largest Benefit Recipient Awarded with Shiny New Hat

Heartwarming scenes today as Charlie, a 74-year-old benefit claimant from London, was gifted a lovely new hat. The gesture came after Charlie lost his mum Liz last year, who had also claimed benefits right up until her death. “I’ve been on benefits since the day I was born,” Charlie told us. “It’s so nice of them to pay for this too.”

But things may not be quite so heartwarming after all. In the course of reporting, we were shocked to find that Charlie wasn’t living in squalor, skipping meals or sleeping in a winter coat as other benefit claimants in the U.K. are forced to. No, his house was quite nice, actually. Upon further investigation, it turns out his benefit of £345 million a year is a little higher than the middle rate of £68.10 a week a disabled person has to survive on. After careful mathematical deduction, we also realized his personal wealth of £1.8 billion breaches the £12,000 cap for disabled people’s savings.

When pressed, Charlie couldn’t name exactly which benefits scheme he was a recipient of. “No, I’m not on Jobseeker’s Allowance,” he told us. “I’ve never sought a job in my life!”

When we asked U.K. authorities, we were told Charlie is claiming a “unique” form of disability payment based on “not just his limited capacity for work but his limited capacity for pretty much everything.” Though exactly why Charlie has not been subjected to an in-person assessment, faced sanctions or been spied on as other recipients have is unclear.

“The hat’s nice though, isn’t it?” a government spokesperson said after refusing to elaborate on the details of Charlie’s case. “It’s so shiny. Look at it. Just keep looking at it. LOOK AT THE SHINY HAT.”

1 comment

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: