MPI: February a busy month for tip line

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While February might be considered the month of love, increased activity to Manitoba Public Insurance’s tip line suggests otherwise.

“Last year, February was the busiest month for tip calls,” said Curtis Wennberg, Chief Operating Officer, MPI. “I suppose nothing says ‘I don’t love you anymore’ than by placing a call to the anti-fraud TIPS Line.”

Over the last five years (2015-2019), on average, there has been an increase of calls placed to the MPI’s tip line during February. Overall, 2019 was a record year for tips to the line with a total of 594 compared to 439 in 2018 ─ a 35 per cent increase.

“While all calls to the TIPS Line are anonymous, some callers will admit to being an ex-spouse or ex-partner of a person allegedly defrauding the corporation. We can only speculate that emotions of past romantic relationships are triggered by increased talk about Valentine’s Day. Regardless of the reason, MPI is very appreciative of their help.”

Information gathered from calls to the tip line is carefully reviewed in order to separate legitimate calls from frivolous calls to ensure innocent customers are not impacted. Manitoba’s public auto insurer saved more than $700,000 last year as the result of information gained from calls to the tip line.

MPI estimates that fraud costs its ratepayers about $50 per year.

Suspicious claims are handled by MPI’s Special Investigation Unit (SIU). The efforts of this special unit resulted in claims savings last year of more than $10 million for MPI rate payers.

No matter the month or occasion, MPI encourages anyone with information about auto insurance fraud to contact the tip line at 204-985-8477 or toll-free 1-877-985-8477.

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