Hurricane Season Is Here Again

By Carlos Martins  |  June 1, 2013

Hurricane season officially begins today. And all predictions point to an above-average season. More storms can mean more opportunity for fraudsters. If you haven’t yet thought about how to handle catastrophe fraud, it’s time to get started. Beyond catastrophe plans and adjuster workloads, here are a few ideas for you to consider:

1. Foreclosure: When handling a property catastrophe claim, a foreclosure indicator should serve as a red flag at first notice of loss (FNOL). If the affected home is in one of the five stages of foreclosure, your adjusters may want to do some research before writing a check. Look for signs of damage from neglect that may not be attributable to wind.

2. Vehicle location: Superstorm Sandy may have been an anomaly in terms of auto losses, but now that we’ve seen what can happen, the event will remain in the industry’s collective memory. Sandy resulted in more than 200,000 auto claims, according to data from Property Claim Services® (PCS®), and most of them came from New York and New Jersey, where rate evasion is already common. Decision Net® Vehicle Location Reports give you a historical perspective about a vehicle’s location over time. The reports take advantage of license plate reader technology to give you a vehicle’s location history with photos and GPS coordinates. That information makes it easier for you to spot cases of rate evasion — and take swift action.

3. Claim triage: Paying claims quickly is always an insurers’ top priority following a catastrophe. Yet the eagerness to demonstrate superior customer service can lead to payments on fraudulent claims. To help distinguish between meritorious and suspicious claims, use ClaimDirectorSM for claim scoring. The scores will help desk adjusters triage claims based on fraud indicators, allowing them to pay honest claims faster and spend more time investigating suspicious activity.


Carlos Martins

Carlos Martins is vice president of ISO Claims Solutions at Verisk. You can contact him at Carlos.Martins@verisk.com.