BI’s Article search uses Boolean search capabilities. If you are not familiar with these principles, here are some quick tips.

To search specifically for more than one word, put the search term in quotation marks. For example, “workers compensation”. This will limit your search to that combination of words.

To search for a combination of terms, use quotations and the & symbol. For example, “hurricane” & “loss”.

Login Register Subscribe

OFF BEAT: Man charged with insurance fraud for fake dead cat claim


Remember the book “101 Uses for a Dead Cat?” A Tacoma, Wash., man has apparently come up with a 102nd use—and the dead cat doesn’t even exist.

Yevgeniy M. Samsonov, 29, is being charged with first-degree attempted theft and felony insurance fraud after he tried to collect a $20,000 insurance payment for a dead cat, according to the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner.

Mr. Samsonov was involved in a minor traffic accident in Tacoma in March 2009. He filed a claim that included chiropractic treatment of soft tissue injuries, and Seattle-based PEMCO Mutual Insurance Co., the other driver’s insurer, paid him $3,452.

Two and a half years later, Mr. Samsonov claimed his beloved cat Tom had been in the car and killed in the accident. PEMCO issued him a $50 check to compensate him for the cat. But Mr. Samsonov then told PEMCO that he had paid $1,000 for the cat “who’d been like a son to him,” and that he wanted $20,000, according to the commissioner’s office.

He sent PEMCO two photos he said he’d taken of his cat. But a PEMCO claims representative did a Google image search and discovered identical cat images. The two images Mr. Samsonov submitted were actually of two different cats, neither of which belonged to him. PEMCO canceled its $50 check and forwarded the case to the Washington Insurance Department’s anti-fraud unit.

“We’ve handled some pretty unusual fraud cases, but this is one of the stranger ones,” said Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler in a statement.