Fraud Awareness
What is
Insurance Fraud
Protect Yourself
Claims Fraud
Report Fraud
Resources

Protect Yourself

Protect Yourself When Purchasing Your Insurance Policy


Always be sure to provide accurate and truthful information to your agent and in your application.

Take these simple steps to protect yourself:

  • Know your agent or broker:
    • Insurance agents and brokers must maintain proof of licensure.
    • Deal only with licensed agents and brokers, and ask to see their credentials.
    • You also may check agent or broker credentials by contacting the Florida Department of Financial Services' Division of Agent and Agency Services at
      http://www.myfloridacfo.com/agents/.
  • Obtain proof of payment:
    • Use a payment method other than cash.
    • Make checks or money orders payable to the insurance company (for example, Citizens Property Insurance Corporation), not to the agent, agency or broker.
    • Always request a receipt, and check to ensure that the amount on the receipt is the same as the premium amount on your application.
  • Get a copy of your policy:
    • You should receive a copy of any insurance policy, complete with endorsements and declarations that specifically outline your coverage, within a reasonable time after your purchase.
    • If you do not, question your agent or broker.
    • If there is no satisfactory explanation for the delay, contact the insurance company directly.
  • Review your policy:
    • Make sure you understand what is and isn't covered and under what circumstances.
    • Your insurance agent can help you with this.

Following a Loss


If you experience a loss, don't be victimized twice. Any insurance-related loss may create an environment for crimes of opportunity.

Common insurance fraud schemes after a loss include contractors, repair vendors or claims adjusters who perpetrate fraud ranging from kickbacks to falsifying claims information. In many of these instances, you may not even be aware that anything illegal is taking place.

Protect yourself following a property loss:

  • Beware of high-pressure sales people:
    • Don't be rushed into signing a contract.
    • Take the time to obtain written estimates from more than one vendor.
  • Obtain vendor references:
    • Check with the Better Business Bureau.
    • Review licenses and ensure that the vendor is properly bonded and insured.
  • Keep down payments to the minimum:
    • Be aware; while down payments are customary and may be required by a vendor before repair or reconstruction can begin, unscrupulous vendors may disappear after receiving a down payment or after performing limited work.

Simple ways to avoid facing situations where there's an opportunity to commit homeowners insurance fraud:

  • Make sure your homeowners' insurance policy is up to date and your coverage is adequate.
  • Review your policy and understand what is and isn't covered and under what circumstances. Your insurance agent can help you with this.
  • Make sure all the information you provide is accurate and truthful, in all aspects of your dealings with the insurance company - from application to claims.