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When you have a car, you must carry insurance according to most state's laws. This is meant to protect all of us in case of accidents. But unfortunately it also makes us targets for insurance fraudsters who make false claims.
Car insurance fraud costs all drivers because false claims raise rates generally. Insurance scams lead to increased rates for everyone, and can be a direct danger to you. So, let's look at how auto insurance fraud could impact you -- quite literally, in the case of a crash -- and how to avoid being a target of someone else's illegal scheme.
Although it is true that accidents happen to everyone, they happen a lot more to car insurance fraudsters than others. Just last week, a Utah driver was charged with multiple counts of insurance fraud because he was in 23 car crashes in just 5 years, recovering tens of thousands of dollars from insurance companies.
The Utah driver was deliberately getting into car accidents in order to collect funds from car insurers. His scheme was more common than you might expect. "Hard car insurance fraud" is when a single or multiple drivers decide to crash in order to collect on insurance.
The best way to avoid fraudsters in this context is to drive carefully and safely. Tailgating or reckless driving provides a perfect setup for a fraudster. Your carelessness on the road will make you a target and you will end up paying for accidents that were not that all but were in fact deliberate.
After the Accident
If you have gotten into an accident and are not seriously hurt, try to keep an eye on what is happening. Is the tow truck pulling your car from a company that you called? If not, stop the truck and make your own arrangements or risk an extraordinarily large bill.
Similarly, you should be leery of lawyers or doctors who happen to appear on the scene. Not everyone is a fraudster but unscrupulous professionals certainly do engage in insurance fraud and you need to be careful when it comes to injury claims and insurance.
Consult With Counsel
If you have been in an accident and were injured, consult with an attorney and have your case assessed. Many lawyers consult for free or no fee.