What kind of sick joke would it be if someone created your funeral booklet and left it lying around for you to find.

A man was shocked (and probably checked his own pulse) when he discovered his photograph being used in an elaborate death scam.

James Bland found out about a funeral booklet with his photograph on it when it was sent to his friend's sister by a co-worker who claimed their brother had died in a car accident and needed time off to attend the funeral.

The Los Angeles resident, who works as an actor, says the photograph used in the obituary is an old head-shot taken five years ago.

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"I'm laying in bed on my phone thinking 'Is this really how I wanna start my day?'" he wrote on Twitter when he first found out about the scam.

According to Bland's friend, the co-worker behind the obituary scam is a pastor.

Bland, who figured the scam was part of a plan to attain some paid bereavement leave, was later contacted by the church the obituary mentioned.

The church explained the fake obituary was creasted as part of a task in the pastor's theology and divinity class.