Toronto, Ontario – Insurance fraud is a serious problem and can involve staged collisions or exaggerated claims, according to Allstate Insurance Company of Canada, which reminds motorists that March is Fraud Prevention Month.

According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC), at least 15 cents of every dollar paid for insurance policies goes towards paying out false claims.

“There is no ‘face’ to insurance fraud, or any sort of person who is more likely to commit it,” said Saskia Matheson of Allstate Canada. “Too often people commit an insurance crime because it seems victimless, but it is Canadian drivers, tenants and homeowners who end up paying the price for other people’s dishonesty.”

Allstate classifies insurance fraud as “hard,” which is a deliberate attempt to either stage or invent a crash, injury or loss that would be covered under an insurance policy, and “soft,” the most common type, which happens when someone exaggerates a legitimate claim.

The company offers these tips:

– If you’re involved in an automobile collision, be sure to obtain the proper information from the other party. Take down the license plate number and get a copy of the police report.

– When using tow trucks, use your insurance company’s network of trusted vendors and read everything the tow truck driver asks you to sign.

– Keep detailed records of your medical treatments. Make sure treatments are necessary and include all dates, locations, who provided the treatments, and what diagnoses and services you received.

– Read all forms before signing, and never sign a blank insurance form.

If you suspect insurance fraud, report it immediately to the police. To submit a confidential tip to the IBC regarding insurance crime, call 1-877-IBC-TIPS.

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