You’ve probably seen a movie or two where the big reveal at the end is that the bad guy was committing some sort of fraud for a big payout. Maybe they were orchestrating a giant scheme to swindle people or faking some sort of injury for a big healthcare payout. Either way, the root of their devious plot was probably some kind of insurance fraud. But insurance fraud isn’t just something from the fictional media—there are real forms of insurance fraud that are punishable by law and that do occur in real life.
So what is insurance fraud really? Insurance fraud is a deliberate action to deceive done by either the buyer or seller of an insurance policy. Insurance fraud is illegal and punishable by law. Insurance fraud perpetrated by the seller could include selling fake policies, churning policies for higher commissions, or failing to submit premiums. Buyers or third-party claimants can commit fraud by exaggerating or padding claims, falsifying history or claims, or faking payout events like a kidnapping. While those may sound like a movie plot, these types of fraud can happen and can have very serious consequences. The most common type of fraud is a policyholder exaggerating a claim while faking a dramatic kidnapping is rare.