Car insurance scams by individual policy holders against their insurance provider have been around since insurance was invented but over the years insurance providers have gotten better at recognizing scams and catching the perpetrators. According to insurance fraud experts, insurance scams are the second highest financial crime in the United States. Additionally, more than 20 percent of personal injury claims and 10 percent of car wreck claims are from bogus or staged accidents.
Most people dread getting into a car accident; dealing with a wrecked car, haggling with your insurance company and personal injuries are no fun. The scary thing is that some car accidents are actually planned in order to pull off a car insurance scam. Innocent drivers end up paying the price both in higher premiums of $200-$300 per year, blemished driving records, personal injuries, and the hassles of repairing or replacing their car.
Top 5 Car Insurance Scams
Car insurance accident scams are the most common form of insurance fraud. These scams include:
- Fake hit and run – a car insurance holder files a claim that he was in a hit and run accident but the accident never happened.
- Setting up an accident. A common method of setting up an accident is the “swoop and squat technique” where the insurance holder swoops in front of another car and stops while their accomplice pulls alongside the vehicle, preventing them from swerving out of the way thus causing a rear end accident. To protect yourself from this type of bogus accident, never follow other cars too closely and allow plenty of room to stop quickly. It’s also a good idea to be aware of traffic ahead of the immediate car, so you can anticipate the need to slow down. Another common way to create an accident is to setup a side-swipe. The insurance holder takes multiple left turns hoping that they will eventually be sideswiped by another vehicle.
- The “on paper” accident. The insurance holder solicits a car repair or salvage company to pretend an accident occurred by signing off on it on paper.
- The wave. The insurance holder waves another driver into their lane then slams their foot on the gas and causes a collision.
- The primary driver scam is where the person in the household with the cheapest insurance rating is listed as the primary driver when they are not.
These are some of the most common scams perpetrated against car insurance providers. Some may get away with small offenses, but many are caught and are forced to pay a fine or even serve jail time.
If you or a loved one were injured in an accident, you have enough to deal with. Let an experienced accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times bigger with the help of a lawyer. Call the caring accident attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!