Insurance department sees increase in suspected auto insurance fraud

Aug 26th, 2009 | By Hot News Reporter | Category: Insurance Today

California. The number of suspected fraudulent cases of auto arson and theft has increased during the recession, state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner said Wednesday.

The California Department of Insurance received 31 percent more referrals for suspected vehicle arson fraud cases last year than in 2007, a news release said. The total increased to 451 cases in 2008 from 344 in 2007. The Department also received about 200 more suspected vehicle theft fraud case referrals last year than the year before.
Insurance regulators receive referrals of suspected fraud from consumers, law enforcement and insurance companies.

Statistics indicate that financially desperate individuals and scam artists might be committing more auto insurance fraud to cash in on insurance money.

The number of suspected auto arson and auto theft fraud referrals increased last year. However, the total number of suspected fraud case referrals for all types of auto fraud, including inflated damages, vandalism and hit and run, has remained relatively constant since 2007.

“Department of Insurance investigators have seen an increase in suspected automobile arson and theft fraud cases recently, and our enforcement experts are working hard to crack down on anyone attempting to skirt the law for financial gain,” Poizner said in the release.


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