According to the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud, criminals steal roughly $80 billion a year in insurance scams. This type of fraud accounts for about 10 percent of all property-casualty insurance losses, as well as expenses for loss adjustments, totaling approximately $34 billion each year.
Although anyone can become the victim of an insurance scam, perpetrators commonly target the elderly. The reason is the aging population is more aware of their need for protection. However, some have also lost the ability to make good decisions, and without family nearby, they take fraudsters at their word.
If you find yourself in the middle of a mess because someone scammed you, you need to contact a reputable attorney who specializes in this area of the law. The greatest challenge is the people who commit this kind of crime are often difficult to locate. In fact, some scam people from an entirely different country.
Keep in mind these frauds cover all areas of insurance. As a prime example, with all the horrendous wildfires in California, so-called contractors come out of the woodwork claiming they can make the necessary repairs and work with the home or business owner’s insurance. As part of the scam, they demand money down, promising to return the next day to start the work. Then, they disappear.
A bodily injury claim associated with a vehicle accident is another example of insurance fraud. In this case, dishonest medical doctors will file claims on behalf of the injured party, usually for soft-tissue damage. The patient receives little to no care, while the physician rakes in thousands of dollars. Back in 2012, this insurance scheme cost upward of $7 billion in excess payments.
A significant issue has to do with insurance scams perpetrated online. Trusting individuals buy fantastic policies at a fraction of what it would cost from a traditional insurance agency, only to discover they are bogus. Once things heat up, the website shuts down, leaving victims out a lot of money in the wake.
Regardless of your situation, you need the help of a prominent attorney. The goal is to track down the fraudsters to seek justice. While recouping lost money is difficult, it is still possible. Whether you are dealing with medical or financial consequences after becoming the victim of insurance fraud, a lawyer who specializes in this field will do everything possible to protect your rights and recover lost finances.
If you have an aging parent or grandparent, now is the perfect time to research the types of insurance fraud, so you can help protect them. You can even consult with an attorney if you suspect someone has targeted you or a loved one but not yet closed the deal.
The good news is that officials are educating the public about insurance scams and the best way to avoid them. Even so, people still become victims. Talk to an attorney today to determine the best course of action.