Arson & Fraud

The Coalition Against Insurance Fraud reports that fraud steals $80 billion a year across all lines of insurance. Insurance fraud is estimated to be the second largest economic crime in America, exceeded only by tax evasion. McClellan Bernstiel attorneys are arson and fraud specialists and have successfully investigated and litigated all types of insurance fraud including:

  • Large scale commercial arson fires
  • Total loss residential arson fires
  • Staged residential and commercial burglaries
  • Substantial commercial vandalism claims
  • Claims involving the mysterious disappearance of property/automobiles
  • Claims involving stolen/damaged artwork
  • Exaggerated property loss claims
  • Policy rescission
  • Staged motor vehicle accident rings
  • Medical provider billing eligibility and fraud
  • Business interruption losses
  • Application and premium fraud
  • Broker and managing general agent fraud
  • Exaggerated personal injury claims
  • Bad faith litigation stemming from underlying coverage denials for arson/fraud

Recognizing that in today’s legal landscape, breach of contract and bad faith allegations go hand in hand, it is not enough to have good coverage counsel when investigating or litigating an arson or fraud case. Insurers need counsel with specific arson and fraud experience. With careers dedicated to prosecuting and investigating insurance fraud, our attorneys recognize and take seriously the primary focus of any fraud investigation — to uncover the truth. Critical to achieving this objective is not only sound investigation skills, but also measured judgment. We have the ability to identify those cases which are fraudulent and should be denied as well as those cases where the evidence does not reach this critical threshold. Through years of experience investigating and litigating arson and fraud claims, McClellan Bernstiel attorneys have acquired both the specialized skills and measured judgment required to conduct an aggressive fraud investigation while simultaneously protecting our insurance clients from bad faith exposure. McClellan Bernstiel attorneys include an experienced prosecutor whose years in the District Attorney’s Office provide the unique ability to interact effectively with law enforcement and other prosecutors, not to mention her extensive trial skills and experience. Our attorneys also have a depth of experience in litigating bad faith cases with underlying claim denials for arson or fraud.

Our attorneys have been recognized as experts in the field and have been asked to present by leading arson and fraud organizations, including, among others, the International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI), the International Association of Special Investigation Units (IASIU), the Fraud Committee of the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM), the Pennsylvania Insurance Fraud Prevention Authority and the New Jersey Special Investigators Association (NJSIA).