The Canadian Coalition Against Insurance Fraud defines insurance fraud as any act or omission with a view to illegally obtaining an insurance benefit — in other words, any action where claimants walk away with money to which they’re not entitled.
Common types of insurance fraud include fabricated claims, padding of actual claims, and false statements on insurance applications. Insurance fraud in Canada is estimated to cost all honest policy holders approximately $1.8 Billion per year.
Every insurance company in Canada undertakes various initiatives to combat insurance fraud and cooperates with law enforcement to hold fraudsters accountable.
Every honest policy holder can also help to limit fraud by being aware of the problem and avoid becoming a victim by:
- Recognize staged auto collisions – don’t drive too close to the car in front of you, and report any erratic or aggressive driving to police
- Avoid inflating claims – take detailed photos of damage and work with your claims adjuster to work with reputable repair companies to make any repairs
- Report suspicious activity – if you see something or hear something that just does not seem right, report it to law enforcement and allow them to investigate
Insurance fraud prevention requires a concerted effort on the part of both insurance companies and policy holders, but that effort can help to save everyone a lot of time and money.