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Florida’s insurance fraud laws have a long reach

Florida’s insurance fraud laws have a long reach

On Behalf of | Apr 26, 2024 | Criminal Defense |

Florida’s insurance fraud laws cab cover just about any important communication with an insurance company. They apply to claims as well as to applications for coverage.

Importantly, they do not just apply to outright lies. Information that the authorities deem as misleading or exaggerated can also land a person in legal hot water. Even omissions from an application or claim filing can in some cases lead to criminal charges.

The laws impose harsh penalties. Insurance fraud in any amount is a felony in Florida. Fraud in the amount of $20,000 or more can land a person in prison for over a decade. Additionally, steep fines are required after a conviction.

Insurance fraud laws should not have a chilling effect on innocent people

Many people and businesses in Florida count on insurance companies to pay up when they have a claim. It is not just families and small business policyholders that must trust insurance carriers.

Medical providers, injured accident victims and even others in the industry like public adjusters and agents need carriers to honor their commitments.

If insurance carriers do not pay, then it would profoundly affect the economy both in Palm Beach County and throughout the state.

In this respect, Florida’s broad insurance fraud rules can serve to discourage people from filing claims or seeking to pursue insurance coverage.

They may also hesitate to advocate for their rights with their insurance company out of fear of being targeted for a law enforcement investigation.

A person should not have to face felony criminal penalties for honest mistakes or even careless errors in judgment. Those accused of insurance fraud falsely should understand their options and be prepared to defend their rights.

Those who have made an insurance-related mistake need understanding

Many ordinary people from all walks of life, including doctors, insurance professionals and lawyers can find themselves on the receiving end of insurance fraud charges. Even seemingly commonplace activities like incorrect billing, not reporting a return to work and not mentioning a prior health condition can support a fraud charge in the right circumstances.

Sometimes, it is in the best interest of those accused to admit their mistakes and move on. Still, they need to understand their rights and make sure that they are treated fairly.