Boston continues to lead the state with the most questionable claims
The National Insurance Crime Bureau has released its annual report on the state of questionable claims in Massachusetts. Questionable claims are instances in which a member insurance company contacts the NICB to review and investigate a potential claim involving insurance fraud. This year’s report took a look at referrals from Massachusetts to the NICB from 2010 through 2012.
Since one single questionable claim may contain up to seven referral reasons, the NICB questionable claims report analyzes QCs via several factors including loss city, core-based statistical area (CBSA), policy type, loss type, policy and loss type combined and referral reasons.
Noticeable increase in claims over this time period.
According to the NICB, in the span of two years, Questionable Claims in Massachusetts have risen a whopping 57%. In 2010, total Questionable Claims were 1,492 for the state but, by 2012 that number had risen to 2,346. The top five cities that generated the most claims begins with Boston (511), followed by Springfield (119), Worcester (79), Brockton (75), and Lawrence (55).
“Boston was the Loss City that had the most QCs in each of the 3 years. The QCs in “Boston” increased 26% between 2010 and 2011, and 9% between 2011 and 2012. Additionally, the percentage of “Boston” QCs to the total number of MA QCs increased from 25% in 2010, to 26% in 2011, but then decreased to 22% in 2012.”
The NICB cautions that while this increase seems impressive, it is important to note that QCs represent a fraction of overall claims traffic. In 2012, QCs claims nationally only represented 0.164 percent of the overall claims population, which equals about 116, 268 claims out of the overall 70.5 million claims throughout the country each year. As such, the report should be reviewed within that context and noted that increases or decreases can be caused by a number of outside factors including better industry reporting as compared to other time periods.
Other statistics from the report
The top-five core-based statistical areas (CBSA) in Massachusetts according to the NICB study were Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, Springfield, Worchester, Providence-New Bedford-Fall River, and Barnstable Town.
“There are 6 CBSAs within MA. All 6 CBSAs were represented in each of the 3 years. The “Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, MA-NH” CBSA had the most QCs in each of the 3 years. QCs in the “Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, MA-NH” CBSA increased 15% between 2010 and 2011, and 22% between 2011 and 2012. Additionally, the percentage of “Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, MA-NH” CBSA QCs to the total number of MA QCs decreased from 69% in 2010, to 67% in 2011, and to 61% in 2012. The Top 2 CBSAs were the same in each of the 3 years.”
The last chart available from the NICB concerns the top policy loss types highlighted in the report. This year collission, bodily injury, personal injury protection, property damage and theft rounded out the top five losses for the Commonwealth.
There were 17 Policy Types identified in the 2010 QC data, 20 Policy Types identified in the 2011 QC data, and 16 Policy Types identified in the 2012 QC data. “Personal Automobile” was the Policy Type that had the most QCs in each of the 3 years. “Personal Automobile” QCs increased 18% between 2010 and 2011, and 39% between 2011 and 2012. Additionally, the percentage of “Personal Automobile” QCs to the total number of MA QCs decreased from 76% in 2010, to 75% in 2011, but increased to 79% in 2012. The Top 3 Policy Types were the same in each of the 3 years.
You can review the official NICB report here.