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In September 2003, a 65-year-old Lawrence, Massachusetts grandmother died in a motor vehicle accident. It was soon revealed that the accident had been staged in order for the occupants in the two vehicles involved in the crash to fake injuries and collect for pain and suffering. This tragic event spurred the formation of the first Community Insurance Fraud Initiative (CIFI) in October 2003 in the City of Lawrence. That first CIFI, the sole purpose of which was to investigate and prosecute perpetrators of staged automobile accidents, continues to make inroads toward reducing the number of fraudulent accidents and resulting claims reported in Lawrence saving auto insurance premiums for its residents.

Since 2004, thirteen additional CIFIs have been created throughout Massachusetts. Each CIFI is comprised of representatives from the Insurance Fraud Bureau, local police departments and prosecutors from county district attorney’s offices. CIFI efforts are also supported by the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office and auto insurance companies across the state. This effort has had a major impact in reducing fraud in auto insurance and has been a major factor in reducing premiums across the Commonwealth.