Insurance fraud charges can affect many Floridians
Most residents of Polk County have some dealings with an insurance company. In fact, insurance may play a larger role in a person’s life than one might believe.
Aside from auto and property insurance, most Floridians, or their providers, will file health insurance claims, and many residents may apply for or claim on a life insurance or disability insurance policy.
Those who get hurt at work, as well as employers, may need to interact with a workers’ compensation insurance carrier.
Insurance fraud includes a wide range of behavior
Most people probably recognize what might be called cut-and-dry cases of insurance fraud, including staging a car accident or burning one’s own property down in order to get cash.
However, there are many other actions that also constitute insurance fraud under Florida law.
For example, medical providers can face charges for improper billing techniques.
Anyone can face fraud charges for omitting or mis-stating important information on an application for insurance, and even padding an insurance claim by asking for more money than what a person actually lost can lead to a criminal case.
All in all, people can easily find themselves dealing with an insurance fraud investigation even if all they did was make some careless mistakes or acted without knowing how the insurance system works.
Florida imposes harsh penalties for insurance fraud
Just the same, a person accused of insurance fraud faces the possibility of a felony conviction even if the alleged amount is relatively small, that is, less than $20,000.
The higher the amount at stake, the more severe the punishment and the lengthier the possible prison sentence. Additionally, civil penalties are possible, and a professional may lose her privilege to practice her trade.
After a conviction, insurance companies also have the option to pursue the person for all of the company’s investigation and enforcement costs, including attorney fees.
A person accused of insurance fraud should understand his legal options.