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Faking Death to Collect Life Insurance Money: A Life on the Run (

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It’s an industry issue that isn’t often discussed, but life insurance fraud is a very real threat to insurers, and it’s something that many take frequent protective measures against. ”Life insurance companies are on high alert for fake death,” says James Quiggle, spokesperson for the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud (CAIF), an alliance of consumer groups, insurance companies and government agencies. “It happens often enough that these crimes are a permanent part of their investigative portfolios.” There is no hard data about how many people fake their deaths to cash in on life insurance policies, so opinions vary about how widespread the crime is. Some brokers say they have never encountered a fake death; others would have lost up to 4 percent of profits without the proper investigative help to prevent fraud from occurring.