The Law Offices of David T. Schlendorf
Menu Contact
View Our Practice Areas

What is insurance fraud?

Insurance fraud happens when individuals make exaggerated or inaccurate insurance claims. In these instances, the person committing fraud is trying to get financial benefits for destroyed or damaged property, or for injuries, that did not occur or that the individual reported inaccurately.

Another type of insurance fraud involves a fraudulent agent or insurance company that sells fake or unlicensed insurance to a customer and causes the customer to suffer financial losses. In other cases, an insurance broker might divert a customer's premium payments into his or her personal bank account.

The two kinds of insurance fraud: Hard and soft fraud

Law enforcement authorities and government prosecutors classify insurance fraud as "hard" or "soft" depending on the facts and circumstances surrounding the allegedly fraudulent incident.

Here is what hard fraud and soft fraud mean in the context of criminal insurance violations:

Hard fraud: Hard fraud happens when someone purposefully fakes a theft, injury, accident, loss or arson to collect insurance compensation unlawfully from an insurance provider. In many cases of hard fraud, individuals might act by themselves and not tell anyone what they've done. In other cases, individuals might act in coordination with a large-scale criminal operation in a scheme to unlawfully obtain millions of dollars in fraudulent insurance payments.

Soft fraud: Soft fraud isn't so different from hard fraud, except that it involves less money and usually involves people who are honest and law-abiding in nearly every other circumstance. For example, someone might tell a "simple white lie" about a single car accident that allows him or her to maximize an insurance claim.

Were you accused of insurance fraud?

As you can imagine, the criminal punishments associated with "hard fraud" are usually more severe than the ones associated with "soft fraud." However, the line between these two issues could be fuzzy and unclear. Also, in some cases, a simple "white lie" could involve an individual gaining tens of thousands of dollars more on an insurance claim -- and that could result in a soft fraud issue involving very severe penalties.

If you're facing an insurance fraud accusation, it's important to know that you will have the right to defend yourself in court against the allegations. Furthermore, you will not suffer conviction or punishment until -- and only if -- the prosecution proves you to be guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Let Us Help You Fight Back We Offer FREE Consultations

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy