State Farm(R) and Insurance Bureau of Canada Partner to STOP AUTO FRAUD in Ontario
AURORA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 1, 2013) -
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March is Fraud Prevention Month and to mark the occasion, State Farm and the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) are partnering on a campaign to raise awareness about the prevalence of auto insurance fraud in Ontario. The campaign - which includes transit shelters and billboard ads throughout the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) - will run for four weeks and invites consumers to join the fight to stop auto fraud by reporting suspected activity.
Auto insurance fraud is a serious issue in Ontario. It ranges in severity from padding legitimate claims to deliberately 'staging' collisions for the purposes of filing false claims. In a 2011 study examining insurance fraud in Ontario, KPMG Forensics found that auto insurance fraud costs Ontarians between $770 million and $1.6 billion a year.
"Auto insurance fraud is not a victimless crime; its impact is felt by every driver in Ontario," says Barbara Bellissimo, Senior Vice-President of State Farm. "Ontarians can help eliminate insurance fraud and lower premiums by understanding what insurance fraud looks like and by reporting suspected cases to the IBC TIPS line, Crime Stoppers or their local police force."
Staged collisions are especially problematic for insurance providers and law enforcement. Often controlled by organized crime rings, a staged collision occurs when one party deliberately causes an auto accident for the purposes of filing false claims.
Recognizing the signs of staged collisions can help drivers protect themselves from insurance crime. Common signs may include the:
- Eye witness suddenly appears at the scene of a collision and immediately assigns blame
- Other driver or their passengers are overly assertive about which driver was at fault
- Other driver or their passengers seem fine until authorities arrive and then begin to complain of pain or injuries
- Tow truck suddenly appears at the scene of the collision with a specific recommendation for a lawyer or medical/rehabilitation clinic
"Staged collisions threaten the safety and security of all drivers, ties up emergency services needed elsewhere and drives up insurance costs since fraud ends up being paid by all of us," said Rick Dubin, Vice President of Investigative Services, Insurance Bureau of Canada. "Between false or exaggerated auto repairs, medical rehabilitation and income supplements, a single staged collision can add up quickly. Ontarians need to understand that auto insurance fraud impacts all of us on the road."
State Farm is a trusted, reliable resource that is committed to fighting auto insurance fraud in Canada. To learn more about how you can protect yourself from auto insurance fraud, speak to your neighbourhood State Farm agent. Visit www.Statefarm.ca/fraud for more information or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=csEYBbnbFng for more tips on how to recognize the signs of a staged collision.
About State Farm
State Farm has been serving Canadians since 1938. State Farm is a Fortune 100 company and is the leading Property and Casualty insurer in North America with more than 80 Million policyholders. In addition to providing affordable car insurance rates (http://www.statefarm.ca/insurance/auto/auto.asp), State Farm has more than 500 Canadian agents and 1700 employees providing insurance and financial services including mutual funds, life insurance, vehicle loans, critical illness, disability, home and auto insurance to our customers in Ontario, Alberta and New Brunswick. For more information, please visit www.statefarm.ca, join us on Facebook www.facebook.com/statefarmcanada, follow us on Twitter http://twitter.com/statefarmcanada, or see us on YouTube www.youtube.com/statefarm.
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