Insurers Pay to Rebuild NY Amidst More Fraud Warnings

October 15, 2001

While State and Federal Funds will be called upon to help rebuild lower Manhattan after September’s terrorist attacks, the insurance industry is already at work to help thousands of businesses and individuals begin the monumental task of reconstructing their lives.

Estimates by the city comptroller’s office indicate that the insurance industry will ultimately reimburse $17 billion in property losses, pay $4 billion in life insurance and cover $18 billion in economic losses. It’s estimated that almost $4.5 billion has already been paid out, and that another $15 billion will be disbursed by the end of the year. The money is vital to resurrect the city’s economy, and could even give it a “much needed jolt,” according to Robert Hartwig, Chief economist for the Insurance Information Institute.

With so much money pouring in private and government insurance organizations are justifiably worried about increased insurance fraud (See IJ Website, Oct. 8). The latest warning comes from the New York Insurance Association’s president Bernie Bourdeau, who told the Associated Press that “Our experience in natural disasters is that after the initial shock wears off, there are always people out there making a living committing fraud. Any time there is a loosening of restrictions, expediting payments, the thieves always see an opportunity to move in.”

The National Insurance Crime Bureau issued a similar warning, according to the AP, citing ” the potential for false business receipts and insurance contracts; claims for damaged or destroyed cars that were not in lower Manhattan on Sept. 11; employee claims for nonexistent injuries; shady contractors submitting bills for work not done; and claims for nonexistent property.”|”insurers, pay, rebuild, ny, amidst, more, fraud, warnings, , october, 15,, 2001, while, state, federal, funds, will, be, called, upon, help, rebuild, lower, manhattan, after, september’s, terrorist, attacks,, insurance, industry, already, work, help, thousands, of, businesses, individuals, begin, monumental, task, of, reconstructing, their, lives., estimates, by, city, comptroller’s, office, indicate, that, insurance, industry, will, ultimately, reimburse, $17, billion, in, property, losses,, pay, $4, billion, in, life, insurance, cover, $18, billion, in, economic, losses., it’s, estimated, that, almost, $4.5, billion, has, already, been, paid, out,, that, another, $15, billion, will, be, disbursed, by, end, of, year., money, vital, resurrect, city’s, economy,, could, even, give, it, much, needed, jolt,, according, robert, hartwig,, chief, economist, insurance, information, institute., with, so, much, money, pouring, in, private, government, insurance, organizations, are, justifiably, worried, about, increased, insurance, fraud, (see, ij, website,, oct., 8)., latest, warning, comes, from, new, york, insurance, association’s, president, bernie, bourdeau,, who, told, associated, press, that, our, experience, in, natural, disasters, that, after, initial, shock, wears, off,, there, are, always, people, out, there, making, living, committing, fraud., any, time, there, loosening, of, restrictions,, expediting, payments,, thieves, always, see, an, opportunity, move, in., national, insurance, crime, bureau, issued, similar, warning,, according, ap,, citing, , potential, false, business, receipts, insurance, contracts;, claims, damaged, or, destroyed, cars, that, were, not, in, lower, manhattan, on, sept., 11;, employee, claims, nonexistent, injuries;, shady, contractors, submitting, bills, work, not, done;, claims, nonexistent, property.,

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