UK car insurers have reported an increase in the number of individuals providing incorrect or false details when they take out an insurance policy. Telling a few fibs in order to lower the price of car insurance premiums may seem like an easy way to save money but fudging the facts can end up being costly in the long term.
Several different factors can increase or decrease the price of an insurance policy. For example, a car that is parked in a garage may cost less to insure than one parked on the street. It might seem like a good idea to stretch the truth about such a detail but in reality this would constitute as insurance fraud which holds serious financial and legal implications.
Fraud is committed when a false insurance claim is submitted or an insurance application is completed using untrue or incomplete information, even down to finer details such as your contact details.
Other common occurrences of fraud include not disclosing driving convictions or previous claims, not telling insurers about modifications that affect a car’s safety or value, or providing a false address to where the car is stored.
If you are applying for an insurance policy using the internet or over the telephone then pay attention to details and make sure all the information you provide in noted correctly. It is possible for omissions to happen accidentally and you might not even realise some of your details are incorrect unless you double check everything.
Forgetting to disclose information doesn’t necessarily get you off the hook so make sure you don’t unintentionally commit fraud. Check the finer details and remember to inform your insurance provider of any changes to your address, name or other important policy information.
Car insurance scams are also something to be aware of. Professional fraudsters try to dupe insurance providers out of thousands of pounds in a variety of ways.
A classic maneuver by scam artists is to cut in front of your vehicle and then brake sharply, causing you to crash into the rear end of their vehicle. You appear to be the driver at fault and must file a claim with your insurance company to pay for treatment of any alleged injuries as well as repair of the other vehicle.
In order to protect yourself from car insurance fraud keep a disposable camera, pen and some paper in your glove box so you can accurately account for any accidents you are involved in.
Photographs are particularly useful when trying to protect yourself against insurance scams and if you are involved in an accident, whether you think it is staged or not, try to record as much information as you can about all details of the situation.
If you think you’ve witnessed car insurance fraud then contact you insurance provider immediately and you may want to contact the police as well.