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Insurance scams ‘boost premiums by £40’

Top 20 'crash-for-cash' areas revealed

Fraudulent insurance claims 'add £40 to premiums'

Fraudulent insurance claims ‘add £40 to premiums’

Fraudulent car insurance claims are adding about £40 a year to every premium paid by honest policyholders, it was claimed this week.

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The cost figure was given by the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) as it published details of the top 20 areas in which ‘crash-for-cash’ scams are most prevalent.

This type of activity involves fraudsters driving to busy road junctions and then performing dangerous and unexpected emergency stops designed to cause innocent drivers to crash into them. Claims are then made against the innocent driver’s car insurance, often including several accounts of fictitious injuries from members of the criminal gang.

Insurance scams

The IFB said Bradford in Yorkshire was the worst place for crash-for-cash scams, followed by Blackburn, Oldham and Liverpool. The bureau added that, working with the police, it was halting the growth of the problem. It claims the organised crash-for-cash networks have reduced in size by 11% over the last two years.

But shadow transport secretary Theresa Villiers said: ‘It is a big concern that honest drivers are being targeted by fraudsters. The fact that “crash-for-cash” scams are costing law-abiding insured motorists an extra £40 on their policies is a real blow at a time when family budgets are under so much pressure from the impact of the recession.’

These are the worst cash-for-crash hotspots:

1. Bradford, Yorkshire
2. Blackburn, Lancashire
3. Oldham, Greater Manchester
4. Liverpool
5. Huddersfield, Yorkshire
6. Birmingham
7. Bolton, Greater Manchester
8. Halifax, Yorkshire
9. Uxbridge, west London
10. Luton, Bedfordshire
11. Ilford and Barking, east London
12. Slough, Berkshire
13. East London
14. Harrow, north west London
15. Manchester
16. Walsall, West Midlands
17. North London
18. Leeds
19. Enfield, north London
20. North west London

For tips on reducing your premiums, read our expert guide to car insurance

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