WINNIPEG — Manitoba Public Insurance says auto insurance fraud charges have soared by 44 percent in the last year.
The increase totals 130 charges laid against 49 people as of the end of December 2020. In 2019, 90 charges were laid against 34 people.
“This increase should not be interpreted as more fraud taking place in our province. The increase reflects MPI’s commitment to reviewing suspicious claims,” says Curtis Wennberg, vice-president, customer service and COO.
“Auto insurance fraud affects honest customers through their premiums and MPI is committed to ensuring people receive the benefits they are entitled to and prevent fraud. MPI remains totally focused on reviewing suspicious cases.
Charges laid can vary from making a false statement, fraud over $5,000 and fraud under $5,000.
Suspicious claims are handled by MPI’s special investigation unit and then forward to the provincial prosecution office for review.
The SIU closed more than 1,200 investigations in 2019 and saved more than $10 million for MPI rate-payers in 2020.
Anyone with information about auto insurance fraud is encouraged to call the MPI tips line anonymously at (204) 985-8477 or 1-877-985-8477.