Fraudulent Insurance Claims get cost-cutting strategies

The Government is to set up a database of fraudulent insurance claims in a bid to tackle the rocketing cost of motor cover.

And there are also plans for a national record of uninsured drivers.

The measures were approved by the Cabinet today after a report prepared by junior minister Eoghan Murphy.

Judges will also have a role in updating the book of quantum, the guide for how much is paid out for various personal injuries.

A database of fraudulent, or a “swindlers ‘ list” is an attempt to crack down on exaggerated and false claims.

The action plan comes after motor insurance costs shot up by 50pc since 2011.

The report sets out 71 actions to be implemented to bring insurance costs down.

Proposals for a special unit of the Gardai dedicated to probing insurance fraud, and funded by insurers, are to be looked at further.

And a commission is to be set up to look at personal injury awards in Ireland compared with other countries.

Labour TD and member of the Finance Committee which investigated insurance costs in Ireland, Seán Sherlock TD, has said there are still too many questions to be answered on motor insurance costs.

“If there is a lack of transparency on claims, how is a national claims information database located in the Central Bank going to work, if the big players in the insurance market decide that they don’t want to co-operate?” said Deputy Sherlock.

“There is a recommendation to create a database but what are the punitive actions on insurance companies if they do not co-operate with the creation of this database or decide to challenge the legislation establishing this database?” he asked.

“If Insurance Ireland haven’t fully communicated the reason for large increases in premiums to consumers to date, then why would they do so now through this process?

“This is a kick to touch by the government, where the actions are put on the long finger to the end of 2017 and into 2018.

“Will the legislation compel the insurance sector to provide key metrics and data that will shed light on the true costs of car insurance?

“Any person that has incurred an increase in the cost of their car insurance premium, will take little or no comfort from the Working Group Recommendation.

“There is no radical attempt to establish the database before 2018, during which people will see a big cost in their insurance premiums.”