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Can I File a Whistleblower Lawsuit Exposing Fraud Against the Government?

above-the-bar-logo-no12Yes, provided that your claim proves to be meets the statute’s requirements and results in a financial recovery for the government. Under the current federal and state laws, if you bring about a successful whistleblower lawsuit, often referred to as a “Qui Tam” suit, that results in a financial recovery for the government, you are entitled to receive compensation. Under the federal False Claims Act, you may receive up to 30 percent of the money recovered as the result of your whistleblower lawsuit. The New York False Claims Act states that whistleblowers are entitled to receive up to 25 percent of the funds recovered. In 2013 alone, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that whistleblowers in federal suits received a total of $345 in compensation. Since 2009, whistleblowers received a total of $1.98 billion in federal cases that exposed fraud against the government.

However, you need to consider the following when filing a whistleblower lawsuit: first, the information you reveal cannot be public knowledge. Second, you must be the first person file such a suit. Third, you cannot have been involved in the fraudulent scheme yourself. Once you file a whistleblower lawsuit, investigators may determine that you helped a company to commit fraud against the government. Moreover, your employer should not attempt to retaliate against you for filing such a suit. Therefore, you need to call our Award-Winning Whistleblower Attorneys at (800) 893-9645 to schedule for a confidential consultation. Because such lawsuits are often complex and often take years to be settled, you need to have experienced lawyers by your side to protect your legal rights. Our Leading Employment Lawyer can be found here.

What Is the False Claims Act?

Amended in 1986, the federal False Claims Act allows individuals to file lawsuits alleging fraud against the government, including cases involving Medicare and Medicaid, as well as those involving defense contractors who commit procurement fraud. The act also covers fraud cases involving research grants and federally insured loans and mortgages. The New York State False Claims Act was recently revised to cover cases involving companies not paying state taxes.

Commenting on the recoveries made by the federal government under the False Claims Act, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division Stuart F. Delery stated, “The $3.8 billion in federal False Claims Act recoveries in fiscal year 2013, plus another $443 million in recoveries for state Medicaid programs, restores scarce taxpayer dollars to federal and state governments. The government’s success in these cases is also a strong deterrent to others who would misuse public funds, which means government programs designed to keep us safer, healthier and economically more prosperous can do without the corrosive effects of fraud and false claims.”

If you are working for a company that may be defrauding the government, call our today at (800) 893-9645 to schedule an appointment with our Award-Winning False Claims Attorneys.

What Types of Companies and Industries Are Often Accused of False Claims?

While a False Claims suit can be brought about by an individual against any type of company attempting to defraud the government, there are certain industries that are more susceptible to False Claims suits. Health care is one such industry. The Obama Administration has made health care fraud a top priority. In 2009, his office established the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team (HEAT) to coordinate efforts of various governmental agencies investigating health care fraud. From 2009 through 2013, the HEAT program was able to help recover $12.1 billion in health care related False Claims. Of the $3.8 billion recovered by the federal government in 2013 under the False Claims Act, $2.6 billion from health care companies. While some of these claim settlements came about as a result of large pharmaceutical companies improperly marketing drugs, other cases involved individual doctors. For instance, one doctor agreed to a $26.3 million settlement after being involved in an illegal Medicare kickback scheme.

Therefore, whether you’re working for a large drug company or a small doctor’s practice that may be involved in health care fraud, you need to call our office at (800) 893-9645 to schedule a confidential consultation with our Health Care Fraud Attorneys to learn your legal obligations and rights in filing a False Claim.

It is important to note, however, that the False Claims Act isn’t strictly limited to the health care industry. False Claims can be filed against any company attempting to defraud the government. For instance, The Princeton Review, Inc., a company that prepares students for various tests, recently settled a False Act Claim for $10 million. The company, which had received a federal grant, was accused of fabricating students’ attendance sheets.

To arrange for a consultation with one of our attorneys, call the office of Villanueva & Sanchala at (800) 893-9645.

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Thank you for visiting our Blog. This blog provides general information and thoughts about various employment law issues primarily in the New York Tri-State area and occasionally in other areas. You are welcome to read the posts. However, do not construe any content on this blog as legal advice or the creation of an attorney-client relationship. Again, we provide the content only for informational purposes. You should not make decisions based information on our blog since the application of the law depends on the facts and each situation may be different. In addition, the law in most jurisdictions is different and changes constantly and we make no representations that any information on our blog has been updated. The Blog should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from an experienced employment law attorney in your state or jurisdiction.

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