ABI releases annual insurance fraud figures

The Association of British Insurers has published its annual detected fraud figures uncovering 1,300 insurance frauds every day, with the average valued at £12,000. The total number of fraudulent claims and applications identified in 2018 reached 469,000, up 3% on the year before.

Mark Allen, the ABI’s manager for fraud and financial crime, said: “Insurance fraud is the scourge of honest insurance customers who make genuine claims. Insurance cheats can be ingenious, and are constantly looking for new scams to exploit, which is why the industry makes no apology for spending around £250 million each year on measures to tackle this crime. Spearheaded by the Insurance Fraud Bureau and the Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department, there will be no let-up in the industry’s determination to root out fraudsters and press for the stiffest possible penalties for these cheats.”

The IFED has secured over 400 court convictions for fraud since its formation in 2006.

The ABI’s insurance fraud findings 2018 (Source: Association of British Insurers)

Of the 469,000 frauds detected, 98,000 were fraudulent claims, including 371,000 dishonest insurance applications. The number of fraudulent claims fell by 6% on 2017, while the number of dishonest applications for cover rose by 5%

The value of the 98,000 dishonest claims fell by under 1% on 2017, totalling £1.2 billion

The most common and most expensive scams were motor insurance, with 55,000 dishonest claims worth £629 million. The number of these claims was down 8% on the year before

Of the 55,000 motor insurance cons, 80% involved personal injury fraud. The measures within the Civil Liability Act will help to ensure fair compensation for genuine claimants

The number of property frauds detected (20,000) was down slightly on the previous year, but the value of these frauds (£115m) rose by 11% on the £1.3bn reported in 2017.

During the last year, the equivalent of two cheats every week received a criminal conviction or a caution for insurance fraud.

Cases investigated by the Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department, the specialist police insurance fraud unit funded by the insurance industry, included sixteen people involved in a crash for cash who received a collective 33 years in prison and a man convicted of selling fake motor insurance who was jailed for two years.

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