Individuals involved in car accidents may file claims with their auto insurance company to cover their losses.
Fraudsters seeking the financial benefits of such claims are increasingly staging accidents, according to a recent report by the National Insurance Crime Bureau. Rings of such incidents taking place in New York, California, Florida and elsewhere have led to arrests of the individuals involved.
"Across the country were seeing an alarming number of what we call staged accidents," Joe Wehrle, president and CEO of NICB, said. "These are crashes that are made to look like accidents, but in reality are carefully orchestrated scenarios aimed at collecting medical and vehicle damage payments from insurers."
Many of these accidents appear like the real thing, making them difficult for insurers or law enforcement officials to detect. Innocent motorists may avoid falling victim by keeping a safe distance behind the car in front of them, taking photos of damage incurred during an accident, calling the police to the scene and more.
Those who think they have been involved in a staged accident should contact the NICB at 1-800-TEL-NICB or via their website at www.nicb.org.