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Understanding Insurance Fraud Investigations

February 26, 2015

Insurance is something that continually gets discussed, whether it's in the news or just among people trying to find the best policy. For many people, insurance is something that can truly help them when things get rough. But for others, it's just a tool to use to drive forward a scam. Insurance fraud is a serious crime, and it's one of the most common investigations that New York City private investigators find themselves working on. But many still don't fully understand what it is all about.

Essentially, an insurance fraud investigation looks into the legitimacy of an insurance claim. Fraudulent claims make up billions of dollars in insurance settlements each year and as a result it's vital that insurance companies stop as many of them as possible. Some assume that it's no big deal, but the more claims a company pays out, the higher the rates for honest people are likely to be.

Insurance fraud can involve a lot of different things, too. They could be something like crashing a vehicle on purpose or actually burning down a business intentionally, or they could involve faking an injury or exaggerating its seriousness in order to get financial compensation.

Investigators will do a number of things to try to determine the truth. They don't outright look to prove that someone is lying, rather, we try to ascertain that a claim is fully legitimate before it's being paid. Some of the ways we can do this include:

  • Scene Investigations – A good private investigator will look at the scene of an accident involving vehicles or property to ensure things are on the up and up.
  • Interviews – Talking to witnesses, neighbors, and others can help as well. It can give a clearer picture as to what really happened, and to the current health of the subject.
  • Surveillance – For insurance fraud investigations, surveillance is incredibly important. In particular, obtaining video or photos of someone who is supposed to be injured but who is moving about fine can prove that they're exaggerating their injuries.

There are a lot of other methods used, but the important thing to understand is simple – a good private investigator can help get to the bottom of any insurance claim and find out the truth about it.

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