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“Crash for Cash” incidents increase by 51 per cent

Major insurer reveals fake accidents account for 2,200 fraudulent claims.

“Crash for Cash” insurance frauds have risen by 51 per cent. Insurance provider, Aviva, said some 820 accidents in 2013 were staged. Of those accidents, 2,200 fraudulent personal injury claims had been submitted.

'Crash for cash' insurance fraud scams up by 51 per cent
‘Crash for cash’ insurance fraud scams up by 51 per cent

In Britain, there is an assumption that the driver of the car that crashes into the back of another is automatically at fault. Organised gangs use this assumption to their advantage, often disconnecting their brake lights or stopping for no reason at pedestrian crossings, with the intention to force the driver behind into their car. Too often, completely innocent drivers are caught up in the fraud.

Gangs are cleverly working out who makes the best victims. Those who look insured, with a well-kept vehicle and seem the most reluctant to contest an incident are the most vulnerable. Aviva urged drivers to maintain a safe distance between them and the car in front and be wary of anyone glancing too frequently into their rearview mirror.

The Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) found ‘Crash for Cash’ costs insurers around £392 million per year, with one in every seven claims linked to crash for cash incidents.

It’s no surprise then that Aviva, which insures one in every ten cars, is pressing for tougher measures to deter fraudsters from offending.

Tom Gardiner, Head of Claims Fraud at Aviva said, “We believe that convictions for motor injury fraud resulting from induced accidents should result in more custodial sentences that recornise the unique physical harm that this form of insurance fraud poses to motorists, as well as the wide social costs.”

If you suspect you’ve been a victim of an insurance scam, the insurer encourages you to request police attendance at the scene of the accident.


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