By CRM staff
Toronto, Ontario -- December 28, 2018 -- Insurance fraud in Manitoba has an annual impact of approximately $50 million, costing each MPI ratepayer around $50 a year, according to Manitoba Public Insurance.
To demonstrate the lengths people will go to defraud their insurance company, MPI releases a yearly list of the top five most unique instances of insurance fraud, based on claims handled by the private insurer’s Special Investigation Unit. Listed below is this year’s top five.
1.) A 25-year-old woman, who was claiming to be unfit to work as a result of injuries suffered from a collision, was collecting replacement payments from MPI. The woman claimed to be unable to walk for more than 15 minutes without getting dizzy and that she wasn’t capable of driving for long periods of time.
It was later discovered that she had been seen walking around Winnipeg’s Comic Con for six hours and repeatedly driving the two-hour round trip from her home to a shopping mall in Winnipeg.
As a result of the findings, the woman’s replacement payments were cancelled and she was forced to pay back $34,000 in benefits that she’d already received.
2.) A theft was reported to MPI by a woman who said she had given her vehicle to her 22-year-old son, who claimed the keys were stolen at a house party. A few days later a witness told MPI that he had seen a man deliberately lighting a vehicle on fire. The RCMP later discovered that this same car had been involved in a hit-and-run the previous night in Winnipeg.
After showing photos of the 22-year-old to witnesses, it was determined that the driver of the vehicle was in fact the woman’s son. The result was the theft claim being denied, saving MPI $57,000.
3.) A 45-year-old woman filed a claim to MPI explaining that her vehicle had been stolen. She explained that the keys were taken out of her son’s jacket while he was out for breakfast with his brother at a downtown hotel.
Investigators were able to determine that the restaurant hadn’t severed breakfast in years and that the brothers hadn’t seen each other in over nine months. As a result MPI filed for a repayment of the $22,800.
4.) A Winnipeg man told MPI that his vehicle had been stolen while attending a Christmas party with his girlfriend.
The vehicle was later found close to the man’s home, badly damaged from having crashed into a tree.
Investigators were able to determine that the man, who appeared to other guests to be ‘highly intoxicated and agitated,’ did not return home from the party, and was seen driving off with his vehicle shortly after the festivities ended.
The man later withdrew his claim.
5.) A man told MPI that he had been driving his 2014 Nissan Titan when he crashed into a Manitoba ditch. Thanks to an anonymous call to MPI’s tip line, it was determined that the man’s wife was in fact behind the wheel of the car at the time of the crash.
MPI informed the man that they would use onboard crash data recorded to confirm the weight of the occupants in the front seat during the crash. Upon hearing this the man decided to withdraw his claim.