Who would have thought that the world of insurance could be so interesting.. and slightly disgusting!
From severely unfortunate souls, to super sneaky fraudsters, we take a look at some of the most bizarre insurance claims.
CLAIM: FALLING COCONUTS
RESULT: COMPANY INSURANCE PAID OUT IN FULL
British travel agency Club Direct began issuing policies to cover injuries caused by falling coconuts after statistics revealed that people are 10 times more likely to die from a coconut than a shark attacked.
Luckily for a Club Direct customer, the falling coconut policy came in to action the same year as her trip to Sri Lanka, where she was calmly sitting under a palm tree reading a book when a coconut fell on her head.
The bang on the head knocked her out cold and she has to be hospitalized. The girl survived and was paid out in full by the insurance company.
CLAIM: MOUSE SOUP
RESULT: ONE-YEAR PRISON SENTENCE FOR CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT EXTORTION.
Carla Patterson tried to con a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Virginia after claiming she found a mouse in her vegetable soup.
Patterson asked for a $500,000 insurance settlement, but after the national chain investigated, they found that the mouse had no soup in its lungs, and therefore had not been cooked.
The jury came to the conclusion that Patterson put the mouse in the soup herself and sentenced her to a year in prison.
CLAIM: THE COW HAS MY PHONE
RESULT: THE INSURANCE COMPANY PAID OUT ON THE CLAIM IN FULL
Ivor Bennett, a livestock farmer from Devon, called his insurance company up and claimed that his phone disappeared inside the back end of one of his cows.
When asked how it got there, he explained that he’d been using the torch on his iPhone while assisting the cow during calving in the middle of the night.
Eventually the phone made a reappearance, but unsurprisingly, failed to work. The insurance company paid Bennett in full.
CLAIM : FLYING CHRISTMAS TREE
RESULT: INSURANCE COMPANY PAID OUT ALL DAMAGES
When Mr. Fairclough was driving home from Christmas shopping one afternoon, he spotted a car driving towards him with a Christmas tree tied to its roof. Within seconds, the tree came loose and flew straight at him.
Mr Fairclough said: “He was driving too fast around a sharp bend and I saw the tree lift off and it flew straight at me. The trunk made a great dent in my bonnet and caused me to swerve off the road into a hedge.”
Mr Fairclough added: “The chap didn’t stop and he never came back for his tree, so the Police said we might as well have it. It wasn’t funny at the time, but looking back it was like a comedy sketch!” Mr Fairclough escaped with no injuries, but it is unreported whether he took the Christmas tree.
CLAIM: MY CIGARS WENT UP IN SMOKE
RESULT: THE INSURANCE COMPANY PAID THE CLAIM.
A lawyer from North Carolina insured a box of expensive cigars under his homeowners insurance which covered them against flooding, storm damage and, unbelievably, fire.
Within a month, the he filed a claim stating that his “cigars were lost in a series of small fires”
The insurer assumed that the man had smoked the cigars himself, and therefore refused to pay out the claim. However, when taken to court, the judge ruled that since the insurer never stated what was to be considered “unacceptable” fire, the company owe the man compensation money to replace his property.
The insurance company later had the lawyer arrested on 24 counts of arson and insurance fraud. The man was sentenced to 24 months in jail and charged a £15,000 fine.
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