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posted Jan 5, 2016, 7:17 AM by Christopher Kidd   [ updated Feb 5, 2016, 9:13 AM ]

Few decisions you will make as a property owner are more important than the ones you make when involved in a property insurance claim. Many involved in the insurance claims process may not have your best interests at heart. One of the most important indicators of this is the willingness of someone seeking out your business who suggests breaking the law. Your insurance policy is a contract between you and your insurer, the terms of the agreement apply to both you and the insurer. One of the terms of your policy is the deductible. The deductible is the portion of repairs “YOU” are responsible for paying out of pocket for. Any effort by you or any other party to reduce or offset your deductible is considered “INSURANCE FRAUD” and is also a leading cause of high premiums. Many "INSURANCE RESTORATION CONTRACTORS" will agree to perform the repairs for a certain dollar amount but will bill your insurance for another. For example, if the Contractor agrees to perform the repairs for say $4000 but bills the insurance company for repairs totaling $5000, because they waived your $1000 deductible. The insurance company has now suffered a $1000 loss.

The simple fact is that you cannot do this without being party to a “FELONY CRIMINAL ACT”. If you are approached by a Contractor offering to waive/rebate all or part of your deductible on an insurance claim, then maybe they are not someone you want to do business with. The individual offering to do this is offering to commit insurance fraud and if you sign up, so are you. THIS CRIME IS A “FELONY”, PUNISHABLE BY UP TO 15 YEARS IN PRISON AND A FINE OF 3 TIMES THE AMOUNT OF THE TOTAL INSURANCE CLAIM. That $1000 you saved on that $5000 claim, may cost you $15000 with 15 years to think about it.

It comes down to whether the insurer wants to pursue charges or not. And if they do, well they will have an army of lawyers on their side. Will you?