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Thursday, June 6, 2013
OKLAHOMA CITY – Today Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner John D. Doak announced the details of a coordinated effort to combat insurance fraud in tornado-damaged areas of central Oklahoma.
“Insurance companies have already paid out more than $250 million in storm claims,” said Doak. “Unfortunately, those claim dollars are often the target of unscrupulous individuals who prey on disaster victims at a time when they are emotionally devastated and most susceptible to fast-talking scam artists. We have to do all we can to prevent that.”
Investigators with the Oklahoma Insurance Department’s Anti-Fraud unit have been patrolling the various disaster zones since the beginning of the tornado outbreak on May 19. In addition to educating tornado victims about potential types of fraud, the investigators have also been verifying the licenses, permits and insurance of people and groups soliciting business. The work has been possible through a partnership with the Moore Police Department.
“Commissioner Doak and his entire team have been in Moore since day one of this disaster,” said Moore Mayor Glenn Lewis. “No one has worked harder than him to protect the victims and I can’t thank him enough.”
Wednesday, the anti-fraud effort was expanded with the arrival of five officers from the North Carolina Department of Insurance. By teaming up with OID’s investigators, the law enforcement officers are able to double their coverage area.
“As soon as I learned about the storm damage in Oklahoma, I asked how the North Carolina Department of Insurance could be of assistance," said North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin. “My team is committed to supporting Commissioner Doak and the Oklahoma Insurance Department as they help their communities recover. Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Oklahoma during this difficult time.”
Consumers wishing to report possible insurance fraud are encouraged to call the Consumer Assistance Division at 1-800-522-0071.
About the Oklahoma Insurance Department
The Oklahoma Insurance Department, an agency of the State of Oklahoma, is responsible for the education and protection of the insurance-buying public and for oversight of the insurance industry in the state.
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