Louisiana residents have struggled with relatively higher auto insurance rates for a long time, but current news reports are showing that today’s drivers need to be prepared for a broad spectrum of risks that includes some specific kinds of crimes intended to bleed money from insurance companies.
A November 11 report from WDSU News in New Orleans talks about instances of schemes to defraud insurers by staging auto accidents. Citing hundreds of fraud reports from the state police in past years, and public awareness resources from national groups like the National Insurance Crime Bureau, writer Casey Ferrand goes into detail about a type of accident that may not really be how it’s intended to look.
Swoop and Squat
According to these reports, the templates for these kinds of accidents, colloquially called “swoop and squat” accidents, are similar to others in situations where one driver brakes quickly on the road, and others slam into them from behind. An expert, such as someone who works at a New Orleans car accident law firm, will understand that this goes on all the time, but the difference with the kinds of cases that police are now reporting is that there may be drivers out there just looking for a chance to create a collision.
Police are finding that rings of people set out to trap distracted drivers by braking quickly ahead of their cars. Some even claim that organized crime is behind some of these fraud efforts. That said, it only takes one person to cause one of these accidents, and it can be hard to assess their intentions after the fact. Generally, the driver who is following another car is seen as primarily responsible for any collision. This is even more cut and dried when it includes someone who’s on the phone or texting at the time of the incident. Police, safety groups, and New Orleans car accident attorneys attempt to educate and warn the public about the dangers of using cell phones on the road, and how distracted driving can be a big legal liability after any kind of collision. As reports on insurance fraud reveal, distracted driving isn’t just a danger because it takes your attention away from the road. It’s also a danger because it shows any predatory accident stagers that you’re not paying attention – in other words, all things being equal, someone perpetrating this kind of scam could choose a target because he or she is using a cell phone in the car, even if the car is parked.
A Good Defense
Experts also recommend being extra careful in places like parking lots, or other low-visibility areas where it can be hard to see all of the vehicles in your vicinity. If you feel you have been targeted by a driver who created a rear-end collision on purpose, call the New Orleans car accident law firm Lavis Law and talk to qualified, professional auto accident attorneys about your case and how to document a sketchy claim for injuries or property damage that you feel has been trumped up to target your insurance company.