Crash for Cash
Definition: to stage or deliberately cause a road traffic collision solely for the purpose of financial gain.
Costing around £340m a year, 'Crash for Cash' scams are run by fraudsters who manufacture collisions, sometimes with innocent road users, hoping to profit from fraudulent insurance claims. With claims from a single collision potentially worth tens of thousands of pounds, organised fraudsters are orchestrating scams that involve multiple collisions and can be worth millions of pounds.
Fig 1: The different claims that can make up a 'Crash for Cash' scam.
Identifying a 'Crash for Cash' scam
There are 3 different types of scam – Staged Accidents, Induced Accidents and Ghost Accidents.
Tell-tale signs that you've been in a Crash for Cash scam:
- The other driver is far too calm for someone that's been involved in a car accident
- They have already written down their insurance details before the accident happened
- Any injuries appear to be completely at odds with the force of the impact
What to do if you think you've been targeted:
- Note as much information as you can about the event, the driver, any passengers and the circumstances
- Take photos of the incident, if you are able
- Call the police and report your suspicions
- Call the IFB's Cheatline on 0800 422 0421 – your information may help us connect your accident to a wider, organised scam.