You may think you’ve never been a victimof fraud, but the fact is all of us are victims of auto insurance fraud because it leads to higher premiums.  Sadly, when it comes to automobiles, wide varieties of fraudulent activities  abound.  Experts say to beware of dishonest car owners and auto shops because they could cost everyone in the long haul.

Billboard of an insurance company

New car insurance fraud scheme

While many types of auto fraud aren’t life-threatening, an increasingly prevalent gambit is– the staging of accidents on the road and then lying about injuries. That can happen when a car in front of you suddenly–and for no reason–stops. The result is a usually a fender-bender, but it can be far worse. Another oft-practiced fraud that a disreputable auto body shop may talk you into is inflating theestimate of repairs to cover the deductible or declaring a lightly damaged car a total loss.

On average, insurance fraud adds between $200 and $400 a year to an individual premium, according to the Insurance Information Institute. If your car needs repair after an accident, ask your insurance agent for help. They can often recommend approved auto body shops.

— Jack R. Nerad for Driving Today

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