By Cynthia Alo
The Nigerian Insurers Association, NIA, has said that fraud claims in the insurance industry is on the increase and is adversely affecting the business.
Director General of NIA, Mrs. Yetunde Ilori, who disclosed this at a media briefing in Lagos, said that the prevailing harsh economic situation is propelling the incidences.
She stated: “Due to the harsh economic situation, this fraud is real and it is on the high side. Apart from other issues that the insurance industry is grappling with, fraud is a major issue and is killing our business.”
Citing an example, Ilori said, “A banker made a claim to an insurance company that he was involved in a fire accident leading to loss of his car and laptop. On our investigation, we discovered that he insured with about four different insurance companies and he has filed for claims in the different companies. The Association had pity on him and went further to gather the insurance companies for his claims payment but realized it was all false.”
Speaking further on the issue, Chairman of NIA, Mr. Eddie Efekoha said, “If you have interest in an asset and insure it with two bodies or more, then there might be a fraudulent intention. You are paying premium for one asset to more than one insurance company, it means that something is on your mind and that is a fraudulent act. You can not suffer more than the loss of an asset and that takes us to the principle of infidelity. If I suffer a loss of a car, I should not be expecting to be paid for two cars, I should only be paid for one car. Why will I insure it with more than one insurance company if I have no fraudulent intention?
“However, the laws of insurance take care of it. The claim will be paid once not twice or thrice and that claim being paid will be shared by the companies concerned. So that’s the law, if truly the asset existed,” Efekoha stated.