Brandon Stein Law: The Harsh Reality of Staged Car Accidents in Florida

Brandon Stein

By: Brandon Stein

If you or someone you know was injured, contact our Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers today.

Here in Florida, one would be hard-pressed to go a day without hearing an advertisement on the radio declaring that if you are injured in a car accident, then you are entitled to $10,000.00 in benefits.  While this is technically true, just like any other advertisement, it is very important to recognize the fine print.  For this particular type of ad, the fine print is that you must be injured and you must be treated by a doctor.  Oh yeah — and those $10,000.00 of benefits you are hoping for, they go directly to the doctors that treat you for your injuries.  The last place that money goes is into your pocket.

As a North Miami Beach car accident lawyer, this is a common misconception that many of my clients have, for they expect to recover $10,000.00 simply because they were involved in a car crash.  Unfortunately, the harsh reality is that the doctors and health clinics reap the benefits of the payments tendered by the auto insurance companies.  Now, there is nothing wrong with this so long as a person injured in a car accident receives the treatment that he or she needs in order to get better. However, from time to time prospective clients come through the door hoping to file a claim against an auto insurance company with the expectation of making a quick buck.  While some South Florida car accident lawyers may take on this type of client, I certainly do not.

Nevertheless, where there is a will, there is a way.  When one hears the term “insurance fraud,” the first thing that comes to mind is fraudulently taking advantage of homeowner’s insurance or a life insurance company.  Yet, it has been the auto insurance companies that have been taken to task by these fraudulent and dishonest individuals through Staged Car Accidents.

A staged accident is essentially an intentional car accident committed or staged by a driver looking to fake an injury and raise a claim against an auto insurance company. Typically, the fraudulent individual looking to stage theses types of crashes recruits an accomplice to sit in the passenger seat and fake an injury as well.  Additionally, this passenger will corroborate the driver’s story that the other innocent victim car caused the crash.

While these staged car accidents can occur in any fashion, the most common form of accident is referred to as the “Swoop and Squat.”  Essentially, this type of crash occurs by the fraudulent vehicle cutting off the innocent car and then stopping short causing the innocent vehicle to crash into their rear bumper.  Immediately following the crash, typically the passenger of the vehicle will exit the car complaining of back and neck pain from the ‘whiplash’ effect from the rear-end collision. Shortly thereafter, 911 is called and police arrive to the scene.  After a police report is generated, that is when the fraudulent individual makes a claim against the innocent victim’s auto insurance company.

Being a Fort Myers car accident lawyer, I have become extremely aware of this fraudulent “business” and always mindful of it when evaluating potential auto accident cases.   This has forced my entire firm to increase the intensity of the new client screening process, as this insurance fraud cannot be tolerated.

Injured?  Contact our Aventura car accident attorneys today.