Crime Bureau: Questionable Claims On The Rise

The National Insurance Crime Bureau's (NICB) latest Questionable Claims Report indicates the third quarter was marked by a 7 percent increase in questionable claims, based on data from member insurance companies.

Members refer claims to the NICB when one or more factors create doubt about the validity of a claim and more in-depth review and investigation is desired. A total of 74,944 questionable claims were reported during the first three quarters of this year, up from 70,295 in the same period of 2010 and 62,341 the year before.

More of the claims in question were referred under workers' compensation and casualty policies than in the past, while fewer were based on property and commercial policies. Vehicle referrals were largely the same, although more of them were due to hail damage.

Insurance industry experts have noted that natural disasters and weather pushed claims and expenses significantly higher this year. The more claims filed and the more spent investigating suspect claims, the greater the chance property and auto insurance costs will increase.

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