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Auto Insurance Fraud

In the United States auto insurance fraud is becoming one of the biggest fraud problems this country is faced with. In this article we're going to discuss some of the more common auto insurance fraud scams and what somebody can do to prevent them.

Today one of the most popular insurance fraud scams involves auto insurance and auto accidents. More specifically, staged auto accidents. These have actually become quite complex to the point where they involve multiple participants. There are many variations of these. We'll cover the main ones here.

First there is what is called the swoop and squat. This scam involves three vehicles. Two are driven by the criminals and the third is driven by the victim. The driver of the "squat" vehicle positions himself in front of the victim. The person driving the "swoop" vehicle pulls ahead of the squat vehicle and intentionally cuts the vehicle off. This causes the driver of the squat vehicle to slam on his brakes and stop short. Usually, the victim can't react quickly enough and rams into the squat vehicle. In the meantime, the swoop vehicle that caused the accident takes off and is never seen again. The victim tells police that the swoop vehicle caused the accident, but because that vehicle can't be located the victim ends up having to pay for the damage and any personal injury claims.

Then there is what is known as the side swipe. This type of accident usually happens at busy intersections with dual left hand turn lanes. The criminal positions his vehicle in the outer left turn lane. When the victim's vehicle drifts into the outer turn lane the criminal side swipes him. To make sure the scheme works the criminal does preliminary surveillance to make sure that the intersection is busy enough where drifting will occur because of the amount of traffic.

Another common auto accident scam is what is known as the Panic Stop. In this scheme the criminal drives a late model car filled with a lot of passengers. The criminal will then position himself in front of the victim and have one of the passengers look out the back window watching to see for any signs of distraction such as answering a cell phone call or changing a station on the radio. Any sign that the victim is taking his eyes off the road. Once this happens the passenger signals the driver who then slams on the brakes thus causing an accident. The victim will claim that the criminal stopped short for no apparent reason but usually to no avail. In the meantime the victim has to pay for all damages and injuries reported.

Unfortunately there is only one way to avoid these type of accidents and that is to be observant at all times and keep a safe distance from any vehicle ahead of you. The sad truth is, if all motorists would just obey the speed and distance laws and rules, accidents like these would never happen. But people drive too fast and too close and thus these type of frauds will always be pulled off. Drive safe and smart and your chances of being the victim of auto insurance fraud will be greatly diminished.

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