Car insurance fraud is a billion-dollar problem in Canada. Every year, the country’s insurance industry losses billions of dollars to inappropriate claims made by auto insurance policyholders. But it is not just the industry that loses money alone. A higher percentage of car insurance policyholders may end up paying higher premiums in the coming years.
You can help stop this from happening. Find out in this article, how to report car insurance fraud in Canada without compromising your identity.
What is Car Insurance Fraud?
This is an insurance-related fraudulent activity whereby policyholders make claims they shouldn’t have made. This ranges from inflating the cost of repairing vehicles to getting rid of a car to get the claim.
Data from the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) puts the average amount of increased premiums at $236. This is the additional sum of money paid by Canadian drivers to cover car insurance fraud.
You may not have a car now but you know someone that does. Find out below how to report a car insurance fraud to help these persons save money.
How to Report Car Insurance Fraud Anonymously
One of the dangers of reporting auto insurance fraud is that someone may know it is you. However, the relevant departments have made it simpler to report the fraud without sticking out your head.
1. Report Unlicensed Auto Insurance Agents through Your Province’s Online Directory
Several provinces in Canada have provided an online directory to bolster car insurance fraud reporting. As these directories are online, you can use a different name to make the report. The agencies in charge also make sure your data doesn’t get into the wrong hands.
You can use the directory of the Insurance Brokers Association of Canada to make your report. The directory is also your go-to for checking the list of authorized auto insurance agents and brokers in Canada.
Note: The reporting of agents only needs to be done when you must have confirmed that the said agents aren’t licensed to operate in the province or country.
2. Submit an Anonymous Tip through the Federal Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario
The Federal Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA) is a regulatory agency that helps solve cases of car insurance fraud in Ontario.
You can use its online portal to submit an anonymous tip for auto insurance fraud. Below are the steps to take when doing that:
- Contact Crime Stoppers: You can contact Crime Stoppers through the FSRA website. Let them know the details of the auto insurance fraud you want to report.
- Make a Call: As an alternative, you can place a call at 1-800-222-TIPS. Repeat the same process as above.
- Submit Your Tip to FSRA: There is also an option to make the car insurance fraud report directly to the FSRA. To do that, click on the “Submit a Tip” button on the page to send your report to the agency.
3. Report to Your Local Police
Both the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) and the Insurance Bureau of Canada recommend contacting the local police.
File a claim with your claim as that is one of the steps to reporting car insurance fraud in Canada.
4. Contact Your Auto Insurance Provider
Do you feel that someone is trying to jeopardize your chances of making an auto insurance claim? Maybe, you had your vehicle parts changed and they seem not to be the original.
The ideal thing to do is to contact your car insurance company and table your concerns. That way, your culpability for the crime wouldn’t be so severe as not reporting it.
5. Discuss with Your Legal Counsel
The Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) also recommends contacting legal counsel. You want to be on the “right side of the law” when your case of car insurance fraud comes up. Find out the best legal routes and angles to explore to make the report.
Tips for Recording Car Insurance Fraud in Canada
Your car just got into an accident. Not your fault, though but you need to record it. Somehow, a third party can make claims that aren’t true. This compromises your claims and may cause the auto insurance company to investigate further.
In this section, we discuss how to report a false car insurance claim.
1. Call the Police
Contacting the local police is your best move if you are intimidated, forced to take a “settlement” or notice a scam about to happen.
2. Do not Accept any Form of Settlement
If the other driver is at-fault, he may want to offer you a settlement-on-site. It is a “bait” that could result in car insurance fraud.
Your best move? Reject it and insist on contacting your car insurance company to make a claim.
3. Record Every Piece of Evidence
One of the causes of auto insurance fraud is making wrong claims. Sometimes, it could be because you don’t have accurate information.
This can be prevented by making a note of every piece of evidence you can find at the scene of the accident or vehicle damage.
The piece of evidence to record include:
- The number of vehicles involved in the accident.
- Contact information of the involved parties.
- The extent of the damage, including the parts of the car that were damaged.
- Registration information of the damaged vehicle(s).
- A record of the events from the time they started to the time it was recorded.
- Facial description of the drivers.
- Physical attributes of the drivers.
4. Take Note of the Surroundings
The accident scene is not the only important place to take your record. Look around the immediate environment. Can you see someone that was not there before? Do you suspect that someone in the crowd is trying to plant an object or make additional damage to the vehicles?
Record this and keep them handy as they can serve as evidence when the claim is made.
Car insurance fraud is a punishable crime in Canada because it is based on the intent of the offender to make a false claim. Punishments range from paying a higher premium, serving a jail term, or policy cancellation. As a car insurance policyholder in Canada, leverage our tips on how to report car insurance fraud anonymously. The reward for reporting car insurance fraud includes retaining your policy and reducing the risks of paying higher premiums.