Fla. JUA Agrees to Finance PIP Fraud Prosecutor

September 30, 2003

In a move that will reportedly help insurers fight auto fraud in the
state, the Florida Joint Underwriting Association (JUA) board recently agreed to finance a prosecutor in the Dade County State’s Attorney’s Office dedicated to auto personal injury protection (PIP) fraud.

“The appointment of a dedicated PIP fraud prosecutor is a significant step toward serious auto insurance reform in Florida,” James Taylor, southeastern regional manager of the National Association of Independent Insurers (NAII), commented. “The insurance industry has long awaited this move, and looks forward to working closely with the prosecutor to crack down on insurance crime.”

The JUA has reportedly agreed to fund the prosecutor for a year, with possible consideration of at least another subsequent year of funding, Taylor noted. The prosecutor and assistant will have offices in State’s Attorney Katherine Fernandez-Rundel’s office.

Future funding will depend on the prosecutor producing an overall increase in cases and being able to handle existing caseload. According to the Florida Division of Insurance Fraud, roughly 80 percent of Dade County PIP claims involve some element of fraud.

“The PIP fraud prosecutor will play an important role in implementing the insurance fraud reform so sorely needed in Dade County,” Taylor added. “It’s a sign that Florida is serious about putting the brakes on auto insurance scams.”

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