Fraudsters Scam More Than R500m from Insurers by Buying Bodies and Faking Accidents

Fraudsters Scam More Than R500m from Insurers by Buying Bodies and Faking Accidents

  • Approximately R522.7 billion was paid out to policyholders and beneficiaries last year after more than 430 000 death claims
  • Fraudsters have been trying to get cash through selling bodies and faking jobs in order to obtain ID numbers from deceased individuals to score with funeral policies
  • Although there has been a 27% increase in fraudulent death claims but this is not something new to South Africa as 2019's statistics show how common it is

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Insurers paid approximately R522.7 billion to policyholders and beneficiaries last year after over 430 000 legitimate death claims. In 2020, 3 186 dishonest and fraudulent claims were made, amounting to R587 million.

Workers in mortuaries have allegedly been selling bodies, among other things, in order to obtain ID numbers. This is just one of the ways South African criminals are attempting to gain cash from funeral policies.

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Buying corpses, faking accident claims, more than R500m scammed from insurers says reports
Fraudsters have come up with various techniques to scam insurers out of money amounting to over R500m in 2020. Image: Stock Photo
Source: Getty Images

The Association for Savings and Investment SA (Asisa) stated on Monday, 23 August, that South Africa's life insurance companies reported an increase of 12% in dishonest and fraudulent claims across all areas of risk business last year if compared with the year before.

The above covers a number of claims which include retrenchment, disability, death and funeral.

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According to Fin24, fraudsters have a number of tricks to make illegal claims. The publication made mention of a family that laid a dead body on a road in order to claim from syndicates who buy the dead bodies.

The Covid-19 pandemic is not the main cause of the insurance fraud as it was reported that in 2019 over R530 million was reported in dishonest and fraudulent claims. TimesLIVE reported that there was, however, an increase of 27% in death claims since 2020 due to the pandemic.

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Nurse arrested for selling fake Covid-19 test certificate makes first appearance in court

In other news about fraud, Briefly News recently reported that a former Parkhurst Clinic nurse, arrested for issuing fake Covid-19 certificates for R500, appeared in the Booysens Magistrate's Court in Johannesburg on Monday.

Briefly News understands Skhumbuzo Manana faces charges relating to fraud, corruption and possession of suspected stolen goods. Charges linked to flouting Covid-19 regulations are expected to be added.

The City of Johannesburg (CoJ) said it was trying to verify the number of fraudulent Covid-19 certificates allegedly issued by Manana. Charges linked to flouting Covid-19 regulations will be added in due course.

Source: Briefly News

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