The Irvine, Calif.-based Law Firm of Palumbo Bergstrom LLP launched a new specialty within its insurance defense practice focused on representing insurance carriers with investigating and handling suspect insurance claims. The department works closely with the Special Investigation Units (SIU) for the firms’ insurance carrier clients as well as law enforcement. Insurance fraud costs Americans at least $80 billion a year, the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud estimates.
Recently, Palumbo Bergstrom investigated a suspected fraud case for Access General Insurance Company (Access General). The firm provided evidence to the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office that allowed for successful prosecution of this fraud case. Due to the investigation and resulting evidence provided by Palumbo Bergstrom, Zoltan Ackerman, owner of Z Ackerman Insurance Agency, Inc., pled guilty to nine counts of insurance fraud arising from a scheme to backdate applications for automobile insurance for a fee.
Palumbo Bergstrom assists SIU claims adjusters with initial evaluation of claims and provides advice on a wide range of issues including California Department of Insurance Compliance Regulations, Insurance Code provisions, potential exposure to both the insured and the company as well as the identification of patterns of fraudulent conduct. With an ever-expanding database of known and suspected “players” in the industry, the firm is able to help claims handlers identify inter-relationships between claimants, insured’s, attorneys, medical clinics, chiropractors, medical doctors, administrators, auto body shops, cappers and others. The firm also works closely with NICB, state and local law enforcement, including the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Insurance Fraud Division, and the California Department of Insurance in both the investigation and prosecution of suspect claims and the perpetrators of fraudulent conduct.
Source: Palumbo Bergstrom LLP.
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