There’s a new scam out there this summer. It’s a staged car accident scam. Consider this, your driving along, you might even be following a little too close (tailgating), and suddenly the vehicle in front of you gets cut off by another car. Then, the car directly in front of you slams on his breaks, and you have no time to stop and end up rear-ending him. It seems like a normal car accident, happens every day, right? Not exactly, this type of car accident is a staged one, and it’s quite common. It even has a name, it called the “swoop and squat”, one car swoops, in front, the other car squats.
This type of staged car accident is difficult to spot, because it is a common car accident. Some tell-tale signs are that the car that you rear-ending are usually jammed full of passengers, as many as the perpetrators can fit in. All of these passengers then file numerous bogus injury claims with your insurance company. The complaint will be things that are difficult to prove, like whiplash or other soft tissue damage, and muscle damage. These types of injuries are difficult for doctors to confirm. Some time the perpetrators will even visit crooked physical therapists, chiropractors, and lawyers to beef up their claim.
These and other staged car accidents cost insurance companies $20 billion dollars a year. You might be thinking, so what the insurance companies are crooked themselves, however the downfall here is that these losses get passed on to us, the consumers. We will sometimes have higher insurance rates, it is estimated that the average person has $100-$300 of fraud priced into their insurance rates per car each year.
So next time you hear someone brag about getting into an accident and suing the other driver, tell them they are idiot and report them. They are causing your insurance rates to go up.