Getting in to an accident that wonks up your prized ride is bad enough. But finding out that the car crash was staged no doubt will leave you fuming. And the only thing that might make you even more incensed is realizing that bit of info too late – after the scammers have walked away with a fat check courtesy of your insurer.
Orchestrated by surprisingly sophisticated criminal networks, staged car crashes are on the rise nationwide, bilking auto insurance companies out of billions of dollars and jacking up insurance premium rates for all of us. Prosecutors recently busted a New York crime ring that nearly succeeded in scoring $400 million in bogus insurance claims. California’s Insurance Commissioner is urging drivers to be on the lookout after the state’s Department of Insurance received more than 7,700 suspicious insurance claims in Los Angeles County alone last year. And Minnesota officials report that the rate of auto insurance fraud perpetrated by organized crime factions rose 230 percent in the past four years.
So how do you avoid falling victim to these crooks? E3 Spark Plugs recommends learning to recognize the four most prevalent staged crash scams as reported by the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud…
Were you the victim of a staged crash? Post your story on the E3 Spark Plugs Facebook Fan Page. And, check our next blog to find out what to do if you suspect you’re being scammed the next time you’re in a fender bender.