District of Columbia Insurance Fraud Laws

People across America purchase many different forms of insurance just in case an unforeseen accident occurs. Fraudulent insurance companies try to take advantage of these people by obtaining premiums without providing any insurance when it is needed the most. District of Columbia insurance fraud laws make it a crime for these companies to perform these unthinkable acts. This is a quick summary of the insurance fraud laws in the District of Columbia.

The Varying Degrees of Insurance Fraud in the District of Columbia

Under the District of Columbia's criminal code, the degree of the crime depends on the amount of money obtained or caused to be lost and whether a perpetrator either attempted or actually committed the crime. The following table outlines the specifics of District of Columbia insurance fraud laws.

Code Sections

District of Columbia Official Code §22-32: Insurance Fraud

What's Prohibited?

According to District of Columbia law, a person commits the offense if he or she knowingly engages in the following conduct with the intent to defraud or to fraudulently obtain property of another:

  • Presents false information or knowingly conceals information regarding a material fact in any of these transactions:
  • Solicits or accepts insurance which the person knows is insolvent;
  • Removes or tampers with the records of transaction, documentation, and other material assets of an insurer;
  • Diverts, misappropriates, converts, or embezzles funds of an insurer by an insurer.
  • Transaction of business of insurance in violation of laws requiring a license; or
  • Employs any other person to procure a client for the purpose of falsely or fraudulently obtaining insurance benefits.

Insurance Fraud in the First Degree

Insurance fraud in the first degree occurs if, while engaged in insurance fraud, a fraudster obtains property of another or causes another to lose property and the value of the property obtained or lost is $1,000 or more.

Insurance Fraud in the Second Degree

A person commits the offense of insurance fraud in the second degree if while engaged in insurance fraud, a fraudster attempts to obtain property of another and the value of the property which is sought to be obtained is $1,000 or more.

Misdemeanor Insurance Fraud

A person commits the offense of misdemeanor insurance fraud if a fraudster merely engages in the act of insurance fraud.

Penalties

First Degree: Subject to a fine of up to $50,000, imprisoned for up to 15 years, or both.

Second Degree: Subject to a fine of up to $10,000, imprisoned for up to 5 years, or both. Second offenders of this crime will be fined up to $20,000, imprisoned up to 10 years, or both.

Misdemeanor: Subject to a fine of up to $1,000, imprisoned for up to 180 days, or both.

If you have been accused of violating an insurance fraud law and would like legal assistance, you can contact a District of Columbia criminal defense lawyer through FindLaw. Visit FindLaw's sections on insurance fraud and other fraud and financial crimes for more articles and information on this topic.

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