The monetary impact of insurance fraud hurts not only the insurance companies that pay out the claims, but it is also felt by the public in the form of higher insurance premiums. Insurance fraud is treated by the Texas criminal justice system as a serious crime of moral turpitude and dishonesty. As such, there are severe penalties and consequences for those individuals who are convicted.
Section 35.02(a) of the Texas Penal Code describes insurance fraud or benefits fraud as occurring when a person files a claim for payment and commits either one of the following actions:
Another form of insurance fraud in Texas is submitting a false or misleading statement in support of an insurance policy application. Soliciting, offering, paying or receiving a benefit in connection with an insurance policy claim is a crime if the offender does so intending to defraud or deceive an insurance company.
The penalties judges are authorized to impose on an individual convicted of an insurance fraud crime depend upon the value of the claim, the specific form of the fraud charge involved and whether the fraud could cause death or serious bodily injury. Typical charges and sentences include the following:
Prosecutors must prove each element of the crime of insurance fraud beyond a reasonable doubt. A skilled white-collar crimes defense attorney might be able to challenge the evidence on the issue of the accused person’s knowledge of the false or misleading nature of statements submitted to an insurer. The result could be a dismissal, a reduction of the charges or a plea agreement with a reduced sentence.
If you are facing insurance fraud charges in Houston, call 713-862-8880 to schedule an appointment with Rand Mintzer, Attorney at Law. As an experienced and qualified insurance fraud lawyer, Mr. Mintzer will work to protect your rights in court.