113. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of formal complaints made to An Garda Síochána regarding allegations of insurance fraud in each year since 2012 to date; the number of instances in the same period in which charges have been brought in relation to insurance fraud; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11457/19]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): As the Deputy will be aware, the Report on the Cost of Employer and Public Liability Insurance (E&PL report) was published in January 2018. Among the recommendations contained in the report was the production of statistics by An Garda Síochána relating to insurance fraud. I am informed that, to facilitate this, an insurance fraud category was added to the Garda PULSE system with effect from November 2018.
I am informed that this change will facilitate the production of statistics on complaints, investigations, prosecutions and convictions relating to insurance fraud.
I understand that as the data becomes available, it will be made available to the Cost of Insurance Working Group (CIWG) in order to inform discussions in relation to insurance fraud within the personal injuries area.
The Deputy may also be interested to note that An Garda Síochána has issued revised guidelines for the reporting of allegations of fraudulent insurance claims to An Garda Síochána by insurance entities. These guidelines were drawn up and agreed between the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau and Insurance Ireland, and arose from Recommendation 13 of the E&PL report. The guidelines were published in October 2018 and are available on the Garda website. I am informed that the CIWG will continue to seek updates on the practical use of the guidelines through consultation with the relevant stakeholders, in order to ensure successful application.
I have requested a report from An Garda Síochána in relation to available statistics and will contact the Deputy directly on receipt of same.