Worrying increase in insurance fraud

There has been a 50 per cent increase in the number of fraudulent claims during the first three months of 2009 as firms struggle to to keep their heads above water in the in the current recession, according to reports from Allianz Insurance .

The insurer claims it has identified and rejected £5m of false claims in the first quarter of the year compared to only half that amount in 2008.

A spokesman for Staveley Head, a van insurance broker, said, “This confirms the figures recently reported by the Association of British Insurers which indicate that some companies have been submitting fraudulent claims since the financial crisis began nearly a year ago. False claims add an extra £40 to the average premium so the more difficult we make it for the villains the less premium honest people will have to pay.”

The ABI also reported that fraud thrives in a recession so insurers are intensifying their crackdown on insurance cheats.

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