Q: Can your Wolverhampton polygraph examiner find out if my neighbour has set up a fraudulent GoFundMe campaign?
Felicity my neighbour, is always short of cash, constantly borrowing money and never paying it back. I felt sorry for her at first. She’s had a hard upbringing and no family to speak of (well I thought not anyway). Not having many friends seemed to make her dependent on me but I always said, if I could help I would.
The reason I’m emailing you is that recently she’s set up a GoFundMe account. She claims she has had a death in the family and she needs money to help with the funeral. She’s posted this on Facebook and already has over £1,000 built up. Some of this is from strangers who feel sorry for her. I asked her who in her family had passed away and she told me it was her grandfather. In a later conversation, she said it was her grandmother.
I think she’s set up this GoFundMe account to get money for herself and not for the purpose she’s told them it’s for. Do they do checks to ensure the money is sent to the right place or do they just send the cheque to her?
I’m tempted to ask her to do a lie detector test. What do you think? I believe if she has lied then this money should go to a worthy cause. I’m pretty sure if I told GoFundMe, they could split it between the pages that are genuine. If not it could be given to a charity. The lie detector results could help them do this.
R. S., Wolverhampton
Response from Wolverhampton Polygraph Examiner
It would be possible with a lie detector test to find out about the authenticity of Felicity’s GoFundMe campaign. However, whether or not you will be able to convince her to take one is debatable. If she is running a fraudulent campaign she will not want to be found out.
In terms of your suspicions, you should first contact GoFundMe and let them know that you believe this is a misleading campaign. They are committed to keeping their service fraud free and misleading people about what money is need for breaks their rules.
You say that you always help her if you can. There comes a time when each of us has to take responsibility for our own lives. If she borrows many and doesn’t pay it back you are not helping her to help herself.
It may be that she needs help with managing money or it may just be that she is a dishonest person. Either way she needs help (and not necessarily the financial type). It’s likely she isn’t aware that she needs help.
As a Wolverhampton polygraph examiner I have helped many people own up to their problems and take responsibility for them. Therefore, I advise that you let GoFundMe deal with Felicity’s campaign and consider booking a lie detector test for her on the premise that you believe she needs help. If you really want to help her we can give you some tips on how to persuade her to take a test. Call us on our Free Helpline 0800 368 8277 for more information.