Lying on an insurance application

11.8 million Americans admit to telling fibs when buying.

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Honesty is the best policy. But not all Americans believe it gets them the best insurance policy, according to a recent study from finder.com.

Roughly 11.8 million American adults admit to lying to their insurer, which equates to about 4.61% of Americans. This number is way down compared to a 2018 Finder survey, which found that roughly 35 million Americans have played fast and loose with the facts when applying for insurance — about a 66.35% decrease in liars nationwide.

What types of insurance are Americans lying about?

Car insurance comes out on top, with nearly a third of people who said they lied to their insurance admitting it was to their auto insurer.

The next most common insurer that Americans have tried to deceive is their health insurer, with 27% fudging their applications. In third is life insurance at close to 15%.

Type of insurance% of liesEstimated total insurance lies
Car insurance29.30%6,518,166
Health insurance27.39%6,093,068
Life insurance14.65%3,259,083
Home insurance11.46%2,550,587
Disability insurance5.10%1,133,594
Travel insurance3.18%708,496
Income protection3.18%708,496
Pet insurance3.18%708,496
Renters insurance2.55%566,797

Why are Americans lying to their insurers?

Most Americans lie to their insurer for one simple reason: money. Roughly 29% of those who lied to an insurance company say their reason for doing so was because they’re higher risk and would have had to pay more for their premiums if they’d told the truth.

The second most common reason cited by Americans is they didn’t want to pay a higher premium, because they want to save money (23.75%) — which, if we’re being honest, is the same reason as the first but stripped of the self-conscious reasoning. Rounding out the top three is those who are unable to get insurance without lying — the reason cited by almost 19% of Americans.

Men are more likely than women to lie to insurers

Women have long been called the fairer sex, and it looks like they’re also more honest. Roughly 6.6 million men said they’d lied on an insurance application compared to 5.2 million women.

While women are less likely overall than men to lie on an insurance application, women lie more than men when it comes to their car, health and renters insurance.

On the other hand, men are far more likely than women to lie on applications for life, home, disability, travel, pet and income protection insurance.

Type of insurance% of men% of women
Car insurance27.66%31.75%
Health insurance23.40%33.33%
Life insurance18.09%9.52%
Home insurance11.70%11.11%
Disability insurance5.32%4.76%
Travel insurance3.19%3.17%
Income protection3.19%3.17%
Pet insurance5.32%0.00%
Renters insurance2.13%3.17%

Does your age affect your willingness to lie to your insurer?

It turns out that the younger you are, the more likely you are to lie on your insurance application, with 6.33% of Gen Z saying they aren’t always truthful with their insurers. The trend continues with each generation more honest the older they get — millennials at 6.11%, Gen X at 4.53%, baby boomers at 3.95% and the silent generation as most honest at 1.22%.

Northeast is home to the most insurance fibbers

Those in the Northeast are most likely to take liberties with the truth when filling out an insurance application, with 5.54% saying they’d lied to their insurer. Those in the West are the most honest at 3.33%.

For media inquiries:

Allan Givens headshot

Allan Givens
Public Relations Manager
203-818-2928
allan.givens@finder.com
/in/nicole-gallina/

Nicole Gallina headshot

Nicole Gallina
Communications Coordinator
347-677-4931
nicole.gallina@finder.com
/in/nicole-gallina/

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