Brad Toerien, the chief executive of life insurer FMI, says there has been a significant increase in fraudulent claims in South Africa in recent years, costing the industry and policyholders more than R1 billion in 2017.
According to industry body the Association for Saving and Investment South Africa (Asisa), the number of fraudulent death claims jumped from 444 in 2016 to 2111 in 2017.
Insurance fraud takes place when claimants attempt to gain benefits to which they are not entitled. This includes falsifying documents at application and claims stage, and exaggerating impairments to receive disability benefits.
“We want to pay claims; it’s why we exist. We give clients the benefit of the doubt even in tricky cases that aren’t black and white.