The state of Florida has a reputation. Florida represents itself as the champ of a high-paying business filled with stages vehicle accidents and injury-related claims. Unfortunately, the Sunshine State’s policyholders must foot the bill for these accidents and claims. People pay more for fewer overall benefits. Moreover, actual victims may suffer from not receiving fair coverage.
A Car Insurance Fraud Sample
A financial advisor experiences a vehicular accident. He attempts to park and bumps into a small car where a parked car driver’s sits. The advisor stops, speaks to the female driver, and ensure her safety. The parked car driver confirms she has not been hurt and gives her auto-related information. The advisor gives his documentation as required and drives off. Months later, the advisor must settle an expensive vehicular accident claim. Floridian auto insurance firms have reported over $658 million in higher premiums in a year.
How the Media Adds Fuel
The media can act as a catalyst. An accident referral service uses prominent lawyers and physicians. These professionals participate in television and radio advertising. They urge vehicular accident victims to contact the referral service. Hundred of people make contact and complain about their injuries. Watching and listening to media adds fuel to accident victims who want to complain. Some victims picture huge pay for their suffering and pain.
Deciding on Accident or Opportunity
Florida has a no-fault auto insurance law. It requires a minimum coverage of $10,000 for vehicle-related personal injury protection. The law does not care who caused the vehicular accident. Media advertisements highlight the Florida’s no-fault insurance protection. According to Lynne McChristian, an automobile insurance institute spokesperson, states, “Accident victims hear the number and think a quick $10,000.”
What Really Happens at Referral Services
An accident victim contacts the referral service and get sent to pain management clinic. Ms. McChristian explains that few of these pain clinics are monitored by qualified health care professionals.
Florida Compared to Other States
As a state, Florida tends to rank at the top. For example, in 2009, over 3,000 questionable insurance claims were investigated. In comparison, the states of New York and California had approximately $1500.00 each, ranking second and third respectively.
Common Types of Auto Insurance Fraud
Some types of insurance fraud occur so often that Florida officials have established a list of common types. Common type of insurance fraud include:
- Accident victims working with auto repair shops for complete damage claims.
- Victims hitting trees on purpose.
- Victims complaining about false accidents.
- Multiple organized fraud rings with different people claiming soft-tissue injuries.
Insurance Fraud Costs and Future Concerns
Florida-based insurance policyholders foot the bill when fraud claims get paid. They must pay more for auto coverage, obtain fewer benefits via their policies, and wait longer for claims to be investigated.
There have been massive efforts toward reform. Florida lawmakers and insurance companies want to work together and make changes. The lawmakers and companies want to follow other states, such as Michigan. Michigan has one of the lowest levels of accident claims from vehicles.