Government crackdown on motor fraud praised by APU
Anti-fraud firm, APU, has welcomed the Government’s announcement of new measures to tackle the increasing number of dishonest motor insurance claims, but says “they could have gone several steps further”.
The crackdown comes after recent figures from the Association of British Insurers (ABI) revealed that dishonest motor claims increased by a third in 2013 to a record 59,000 cases.
The new measures are intended to reduce the amount paid out unnecessarily and to curtail the compensation culture, they include:
• Compelling the courts to throw out applications in full where the claimant has been dishonest
• Banning lawyers who encourage claims by offering incentives
• Reducing questionable whiplash claims by improving medical assessments
• Introducing rules to restrict the practice of settling whiplash claims without proof of injury
However, APU thinks the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has not gone far enough. “The government needs to provide a much firmer deterrent and compel insurers, the Police and other interested parties to collaborate in the fight against fraud,” said Neil Thomas, Director of Investigative Services at APU Ltd.
“As well as a zero tolerance approach to the fraudsters themselves, there’s a desperate need for increased communication between public and private sectors, which is vital if the rise in motor fraud is to be stopped.”
“Better co-operation between Police, insurance firms, law enforcement agencies and private companies, like APU, is essential when the public sector’s resources are so scarce.”
Investigators from the bespoke team, which is part of the Automotive & Insurance Solutions Group of companies, helped prevent more than £200,000 in fraudulent insurance claims in cases that came to fruition in the first two months of 2014 alone.
APU has been instrumental in the fight against criminals attempting to defraud motorists and insurance companies, particularly ‘crash for cash’ fraudsters. Its team of former police investigators identified the emergence of ‘flash for cash’ last year, one of the latest tactics being used to defraud innocent motorists and insurers.