Gov. Rick Snyder Tuesday announced the formation of a new division within the state’s Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS), designed to investigate acts of fraud in the insurance and financial sectors.
The department will work in tandem with other law enforcement agencies to share information on fraudulent activity and collaborate to prevent the occurrence of future instances of fraud within the auto insurance, health insurance, and banking sectors.
“Fraud in the system drives up the cost of insurance for all Michiganders, and we need to do everything we can to eradicate it,” Gov. Snyder said.
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley said: “We should be using all possible resources to make insurance more affordable for those in Michigan who purchase it. Allowing the Department of Insurance and Financial Services to directly identify and combat fraud is a major step toward lowering costs and protecting consumers.”
“This new Anti-Fraud Unit is a positive step forward in addressing the universally recognized problem of fraud in the insurance and financial services sectors,” said DIFS Director Patrick McPharlin. “It will increase our ability to investigate fraud and will ultimately drive down the cost of insurance for Michiganders.”
Executive Order 2018-X, signed by the governor today, permits the new Anti-Fraud Unit within DIFS to:
- Conduct background checks on applicants for licenses and current licensees.
- Collect and maintain claims of criminal and fraudulent activities.
- Investigate claims of criminal and fraudulent activity in the insurance and financial services markets that, if true, would constitute a violation of applicable state or federal law.
- Maintain records of its criminal investigations.
- Share records of its investigations with other criminal justice agencies.
- Review information from other criminal justice agencies to assist in the enforcement and investigation of all matters under the authority of DIFS.
- Conduct outreach and coordination efforts with local and state law enforcement and regulatory agencies to promote investigation and prosecution of criminal and fraudulent activities.