ABTA has launched a campaign to stop sickness scams
Over the last three years, there has been a 500% increase in British holidaymakers claiming compensation for falling ill on their holidays. To combat the fake claims of many holiday goers, ABTA has launched a campaign to stop sickness scams. They want people to be aware of the consequences of making fake claims.
As an example one hotel in Greece are now counter suing a British couple for £170,000 because they made a fake sick claim against them.
Many claimants may not be aware that if the claim is fraudulent they can be blacklisted from travel agencies and the threat of imprisonment is a very real threat.
The problems seems to be only with the British, who have joined the ranks of the compensation culture. by the possibility of claiming £5,000 in compensation. Some Claims Management Companies have actually encouraged claimants to submit fraudulent claims.
The problem has escalated to such an extent that travel agencies in Turkey and Greece no longer accept British Holiday makers in their hotels.
ABTA have now launched a tool for the travel industry and members of the public to email their local MP to support the stop sickness campaign at the website www.stopsicknessscams.com. Their MP can then lobby the Ministry of Justice.
Rather like the whiplash, compensation fraud, the scams are costing the travel industry millions and ultimately the cost of holidays will increase to cover the losses incurred by these claims.
ABTA has been working closely with the Ministry of Justice over the last few months. They have been sharing claims data. ABTA has said there are some relatively simple amendments to court rules, which would close the loophole. They want holiday sickness claims to be included in a fixed cost regime, thus reducing the incentive for the Claims Management Companies to bring the cases to court in the first place.
The “stop sickness scam” campaign is in the early stages but ultimately can only lead to a more fair system for those who are genuinely sick on their holidays and for the hotels who have had false claims made against them.
With the main summer season just around the corner ABTA are encouraging members to support the campaign on social media. Also using #StopSicknessScams.
If the British holidaymaker wants to continue to enjoy cheap package holidays in the sun, they need to stop thinking that it is OK to claim food poisoning ruined their holiday when it is not true.