Mark Mandell, Esq.
Michigan’s Secretary of State Ruth Johnson recently announced new plans to combat scammers who take advantage of vulnerable citizens by selling fake insurance. Johnson is looking to utilize cutting-edge technology and expand best practices in a move that is a part of ongoing efforts to stamp out auto insurance fraud.
The details of the plan include:
• A comprehensive review of her department's processes, technology and structure to determine how best to detect and deter fraud.
• Data analysis to identify signs in transactions that may indicate fraud.
• Expanding the verification of the thousands of insurance certificates the department receives from customers daily.
• An upgrade in case management software to give department investigators the best tools for tracking down fraudulent activity.
• A roundtable discussion with business leaders about fraud to seek their advice and ensure the department is following best practices.
The Secretary of State’s office is looking to use data analysis to compare elements of transactions with those of previous fraudulent ones. Similarities between one transaction and past fraudulent transactions can flagged and then alert the office that a fraud investigation may be needed.
The department has received funding to add staff to a new unit that will verify the validity of the 10,000 to 20,000 insurance certificates that come in through the mail each day from customers renewing their vehicle registration, in addition to the reviews already being done in Secretary of State offices. Plans are also in place to upgrade its case management software so department investigators are best equipped for tracking down fraud.
Some of these new initiatives are the result of recent recommendations from a task force aimed at the fight against auto insurance fraud. To read more on this task force, check out my past post on the Secretary of State’s efforts: http://michiganfraudlawyer.blogspot.com/2014/10/mi-secretary-of-state-looking-to-crack.html
It is refreshing to see follow-through from the Secretary of State on this issue, which affects so many Michiganders. Recent data shows that a whopping 16% of documents filed by motorists from 2013-2014 were fake. The outreach to the business community is also a critical point in the effort to keep the department at the forefront of protecting Michigan consumers from fraud.
If you feel like you are a victim of insurance fraud, contact experienced Attorney Mark Mandell with Fausone Bohn, LLP, at (248) 380-0000. Mark has over a decade of experience fighting for his clients’ rights.