A study published in Frontiers in Psychology
has uncovered the reason why people commit insurance fraud. Amazingly, it’s not just about getting more money from insurers.
has reported that the real reason people commit insurance fraud is that they are unhappy about having claims rejected in the past, whether fairly or unfairly.
The study used a pretend insurance claim scenario and looked at the responses of people making claims. The people who had their claims initially rejected were more likely to lie about their future claims to get them settled.
The people who had their claims rejected in the study naturally reported more negative emotions and were more likely to lie or cheat in the next phase of the study. It didn’t matter if the rejection was based on an objective or subjective decisions. Even if the person stood to financially benefit from telling the truth, they were still more likely to lie in the future.
The scientists conducting the survey suggested greater clarity and transparency on the part of insurers could reduce the negative emotions customers endure and subsequently reduce the number of inflated claims.
Dr Sophie Van Der Zee, lead author of the study, said tackling fraud will affect a lot of honest people’s lives.
“If we understand when people tend to behave dishonestly and commit fraud, we can construct the environment in a way that people are encouraged to behave honestly rather than deceptively,’ said Van Der Zee. “Seeing as the detection of deceit and fraud is very difficult, prevention is better than cure."
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