How car insurance fraud works

Just picture this scenario. You are approaching a roundabout in your car and there is a vehicle stopped in front of you, apparently waiting for a gap in the traffic in order to continue around the roundabout. You stop behind this car, and then it very gently rolls back and collides, at a low speed, with your vehicle. The occupants (there are usually more than one person in the car) get out and apologised profusely, you swap insurance details and then wait for your insurer to let you know that you can have your car repaired at the other person's expense.

Sadly, this does not happen. You learn that the other driver has alleged that you drove into the back of his or her vehicle, and that the consequence is at least one case of whiplash injury.

You protest that firstly the accident did not happen in that way, and that the vehicle rolled into yours; and secondly that it happened at such a low speed that no one could possibly have been injured. The insurance company however let you know that they have been invoiced for repairs to the rear of the other vehicle; and yet you cannot recall seeing any damage there whatsoever. Congratulations, you have been caught up in a big insurance scam.

There are parts of cities such as Bradford, Birmingham and Manchester where this sort of con is all too common, and indeed there have been arrests of gang members who have been involved in multiple incidents of this kind. Apart from those who do it on a full-time basis however there have been innumerable incidents where seemingly honest people have also pulled off the same stunt. It is hard not to come to the conclusion that certain communities look upon crimes of this sort as being a perfectly acceptable way to supplement an income.

Unfortunately, it is one which insurance companies find it very difficult to contest. Proving whether or not someone is suffering from pain for a whiplash injury is extremely difficult and when cases are brought to court the outcome is very rarely favourable for the insurers unless they have specific evidence with which to contest a claim. In addition, legal cases like this can be very expensive for them, particularly if the plaintive is backed by a very experienced legal claims lawyer, and the case is being funded by legal aid.

Every single penny that the insurance companies have to pay out comes out of the premiums that we have to pay for our car insurance; so we are the ultimate losers.

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