NICB Reports "Questionable" Auto Glass Claims Are Up 527 Percent for First Half of Year
August 2, 2010

The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) reports that "questionable" auto glass claims are up 527 percent for the first half of 2010, compared with the same period last year. The finding comes as part of NICB'S annual questionable referral reason analysis, which looks at a variety of types of claims from its insurance company members.

During the first half of 2009, NICB had 239 questionable auto glass claims referred to it, compared with 1,498 for the first half of 2010-up 527 percent by 1,259 claims. Last year, the group had reported that suspicious auto glass claims were up 76 percent over the previous year.

"We're seeing concern from our members about criminal rings that are deliberately damaging vehicle windshields in order to file an insurance claim, and in some cases are not doing satisfactory repairs or replacements," says Joe Wehrle, NICB president and chief executive officer.

Though questionable auto glass claims may be up, NICB spokesperson Frank Scifaldi says fraudulent claims may not necessarily be. According to information from NICB, these are claims that NICB member insurance companies refer to NICB for closer review and investigation based on one or more indicators of possible fraud.

"These are not definitive fraud cases at all," Scifaldi told glassBYTEs.com™/AGRR magazine. "These are cases that the member companies—of which there are more than 1,000-have the option of referring … as questionable to us."

The NICB is a not-for-profit organization headquartered in Des Plaines, Ill., which works to "prevent, detect and defeat insurance fraud." The group receives support from approximately 1,000 property/casualty insurance companies. It also works with law enforcement agencies "to facilitate the identification, detection and prosecution of insurance criminals."

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