Drivers warned over crackdown on 'exaggerating' on car insurance forms

Drivers have been issued a warning amid a crackdown on "exaggerating" on car insurance forms. Motor insurance scams are on the rise and even if you aren’t involved in any, either as a victim or a perpetrator, it will be costing you in the form of higher insurance premiums.

Motor insurance shockingly makes up nearly two-thirds (59%) of all fraud cases, according to the latest data from the Association of British Insurers (ABI). The data shows that there were a total of 72,600 fraudulent claims in 2022 alone, which cost the industry around £1.1 billion. These costs are then passed on to drivers in the form of higher premiums.

Over 50% of UK adults revealed their motor insurance has increased by up to £100 compared with the previous year - and this is partly down to insurance fraud. Liz Hunter, Director at Money Expert, explained some of the most common scams, and how you can avoid them.

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On dumping your car, she said: "This usually involves someone hiding their car or damaging it on purpose, then making a claim on their insurance for the value of the car stating that it has been ‘stolen’. They may even sell parts of the car to pocket the extra cash."

She added: "A staged accident is where a driver or drivers will plan to have a car accident so they can claim on their insurance and split the money. A “crash for cash” scam involves a driver who deliberately causes an accident by crashing into another innocent driver or suddenly braking causing someone to crash into them. They’ll then make a claim against the other driver."

On a pre-inception loss, she said: "This is when someone will make a claim on their insurance for vehicle damage that happened before they were insured. This is to cover that they weren’t insured when it happened." And on exaggeration, she said: "Some people will try to exaggerate the damage from an accident to try and get more money. For example, they could say they’re more hurt than they are or say items that were worth a lot of money were involved in the accident. There is also a growing number of fraudsters using AI to fake photos, exaggerating damage on vehicles, and forging documents to try and scam money from insurers."