CHEYENNE, Wyoming – The fight against insurance fraud in Wyoming has taken an important step forward as Governor Matt Mead signed a bill into law that will enable law enforcement and insurance investigators to communicate in fraud investigations, thus making detection and prosecution more likely. The Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) commends the Wyoming Legislature and Gov. Mead for recognizing the need to foster information sharing between insurers and law enforcement in these complicated white collar criminal investigations.
“Fraud is the second most costly white collar crime in America and it robs the average family of somewhere between $400 and $700 per year,” said Kelly Campbell, PCI vice president, state government relations. “Consumers benefit when fraud is prevented and premiums are kept manageable. This bill will give law enforcement and insurers the ability to work together early in the process and more effectively fight fraud. While insurers have fraud units that investigate claims from a civil and contractual perspective, law enforcement has the authority to pursue criminal charges for fraudulent behavior. It is crucial that these two entities can communicate and share information in order to combat fraud.”
HB 50, authored by Rep. Brown, will allow law enforcement agencies to talk with insurance companies about suspected fraud without having to issue a subpoena to the insurer. Before this bill was signed into law, Wyoming was one of only four states that did not allow insurers to talk to law enforcement when the company suspected fraud. PCI and other insurers supported HB 50 throughout the legislative process.