According to recent survey analysis by finder.com.au, 1.3 million Aussies have provided false accounts to insurance providers, with most (561,000) lying on car insurance applications.
Health insurance was the second most likely type of claim to be fabricated, with 486,000 Australians admitting to doing so, while life insurance came third (205,000).
Bessie Hassan, money expert at finder.com.au, warned consumers that lying on insurance constitutes fraud and can incur criminal charges.
“Even if telling the truth could increase premiums, it’s worth being upfront as the alternative could have serious consequences,” she said.
“Whether it’s preexisting conditions, no-claim bonuses or even your age, lying isn’t worth the rejected claim if something does go wrong.
“Insurance fraud is illegal, so it goes without saying that dishonest claims will be denied. Be upfront because even if you are a longstanding customer, questions will be asked about what you put on your application.
“Insurance brands have claims investigators so it’s likely they’ll find out if you’ve lied,” Ms Hassan said.
The survey, which looked at the responses of 2,010 Australians, found that Millennials are 10 times more likely to lie (17 per cent) on an application than Baby Boomers (1 per cent).
Credit fraud also widespread
Finder.com.au’s analysis also found that more than $220 billion in financing may have been applied for through deceptive means, as one in 10 Australians admits to lying on a finance application.
Of the people surveyed, 4 per cent indicated they’d lied on a credit card application. As 16.1 million credit cards are currently in circulation, finder.com.au estimates that could mean more than 600,000 cards were acquired via falsified applications.
“If the false information results in you gaining access to credit you would not otherwise be able to obtain, then there could be serious consequences,” Ms Hassan said.
“It might mean you are more likely to default and, depending on the fine print, you could even face prosecution.
“Giving false information, whether that’s exaggerating the value of your assets or employment status to underestimating expenses, is fraud,” she concluded.