Personal Injury Fraud and Fiction – Desperate Times call for Desperate Measures!

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Insurance claims, in general, are on the up and one reason being cited for this is the hardship a lot of people are experiencing in the current financial climate. With so many people having lost jobs or had their income significantly reduced, some have seen no other way than to take the drastic measure of filing a false insurance claim in the hope of getting compensated.

These claims can come in many different forms from fictitious burglaries, thefts, and muggings, to breakdowns of freezers resulting in loss of food, whiplash claims after car accidents, and of course, let’s not forget the good old  “slip and fall”! 

As most of us are aware, “slip and fall” is a type of personal injury claim resulting from a person slipping, or tripping, on someone else’s property and it resulting in injury.  In these instances, the injured party may be eligible for compensation from the property owner.

Slip, trip, and fall injuries cost the UK approaching £1 billion per year. Many of these accidents happen in the workplace and most are genuine accidents resulting in genuine claims.  But there is a growing trend of deliberate self-afflicted injury and subsequent fraudulent personal injury insurance claims being submitted. Everywhere we look there seem to be advertisements for slip and fall attorneys and lawyers.  From TV and radio to pop-up ads online - even door to door leaflets – we seem to be bombarded with their presence.

It would seem that a “compensation culture” has developed in the UK,  which goes against the grain of the traditional stereotypical ‘stiff upper lip’ and ‘just get on with it’ British attitude.  Could this be because of the constant deluge of advertisements we are subjected to? After all, put temptation in desperation’s path…….?  Is it any wonder we have seen the annual value of insurance fraud reach £1.2 billion in 2019!

Some examples of fraudulent slip and fall cases are those such as the woman who pretended to trip over some orange juice cartons in a shop in Bradford. Upon attempting to make an insurance claim for her injuries, CCTV footage exposed the claim to be totally false and therefore fraudulent.

In June 2016 a man claimed he had slipped on a spillage in a discount store and again in July 2017 he pulled a similar stunt saying he had slipped on some water in a pet shop – pretty unlucky guy huh?

The Association of Personal Injury was founded in the UK in 1990 – it now has 5,250 members and a turnover of £1.94 million.  So we can see what big business personal injury has become. Whilst there are constant measures in place to detect insurance fraud, and most of them are successful at doing so, there will always be those who deliberately set out to defraud the system and unfortunately succeed.  This not only results in all of us having to pay more for every type of insurance, but it also shows that this unpleasant “compensation culture” is most definitely on the up!