Over four million Brits consider fraudulent home insurance claims
One in 10 recession-struck Brits admit they would consider making a false home insurance claim, according to research from MoneySupermarket.com.
The comparison site found 4.3 million people with home insurance, (11 per cent), are willing to consider making a false claim on their home insurance. Of these people, four per cent (or 1.5 million) admit they'd consider making a false claim - or had already done so - regardless of the economic climate. Worryingly, almost 780,000 people have already defrauded their home insurer by successfully making a false insurance claim in the last five years.
Peter Harrison, insurance expert at MoneySupermarket, said: "It's extremely concerning to discover so many people are contemplating making a false or exaggerated claim on their home insurance. With recent news the UK has slipped into a double-dip recession, household finances will undoubtedly be stretched, but no matter how tempting, fabricating a claim for a payout is illegal, and you could face being prosecuted as a result."
Insurance companies take fraud very seriously, no matter how big or small the amount being claimed for. If insurers are suspicious of a claim's validity it will be investigated with specialist detection processes and anti-fraud technology. Anyone caught and found guilty of insurance fraud would find it extremely difficult to get insurance cover in the future. Previous convictions for insurance fraud must be disclosed on application forms for any type of insurance. Insurance premiums will be much more expensive for someone guilty of making a false claim, and in some cases insurers may not be willing to offer cover at all.
Peter Harrison continued: "Perhaps people feel their dishonesty only impacts the insurer but this couldn't be further from the truth. Insurance fraud increases the cost of premiums for honest consumers as insurers look to re-coup the money paid out on false claims. There is also the risk of someone with a conviction for insurance fraud being unable to get insurance cover in the future. For a homeowner, being declined buildings insurance would go against the terms of your mortgage, and for a driver, not having valid car insurance would leave them unable to take to the road as it's illegal to drive without valid insurance. The repercussions of making a fraudulent insurance claim are severe and I urge consumer not to take the risk."
When it comes to fraudulent home insurance claims, there is a North-South divide with people in the North East (15 per cent) and North West (14 per cent) most likely to make a false claim. However, residents in the South East were the least likely to make a claim, with only eight per cent stating they'd be prepared to do so.
In addition, males are more likely to make a fraudulent claim (14 per cent) compared to females (eight per cent). Those under the age of 35 are more likely to act dishonestly, with 21 per cent making, or likely to make, a false claim compared to just 10 per cent of over 45's.