News & Analysis as of

It’s Time to Re-Think the False Claims Act

The federal False Claims Act (FCA) is one of the government’s primary weapons in combating fraud by federal contractors, federal grantees and recipients of federal benefits. Since 1986, when the FCA was restructured into its...more

We Don’t Need No Intervention: Qui Tam Relator in Omnicare Wins Big Without DOJ

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced the settlement of two qui tam whistleblower lawsuits against Omnicare Inc., the largest nursing home pharmaceutical and pharmacy services vendor in the nation....more

Texas Federal Court Dismisses FCA Claims As Insufficiently Pled

In U.S. ex rel. Williams v. McKesson Corp., No. 3:12-CV-0371-B (N.D. Tex. July 9, 2014), a Texas federal court recently dismissed a qui tam whistleblower suit by a former employee of McKesson, a Texas-based entity that...more

Fifth Circuit: FCA Inapplicable to Claims Involving Private Funds Administered by Government-Created Programs

In United States of America ex rel Rene Shupe v. Cisco Systems, Inc. and Avnet, Inc., No. 13-40807 (5th Cir. July 7, 2014), the Fifth Circuit reversed a district court’s order denying a motion to dismiss a qui tam...more

Employers Fight Back Against Whistleblowers

In 2013, the federal government recovered $3.8 billion from settlements and judgments under the False Claims Act (FCA). Whistleblowers—also called “relators”—can recover up to 30 percent of whatever a defendant pays in a...more

"Pay Me, Or Else…": California Court Rules Employee's Pre-Litigation Qui Tam Threat is Extortionate

A California appellate court recently issued a warning to employees who try to negotiate settlements with their employers by making veiled threats to report an employer's real or imagined criminal activity. In Stenehjem v....more

Third Circuit Adopts Less Demanding FCA Pleading Standard

Last week, the Third Circuit reversed a New Jersey district court’s decision to dismiss a False Claims Act (FCA) qui tam law suit, holding that the court applied an overly demanding pleading standard to relator Thomas...more

Supreme Court Declines to Opine on Circuit Split Over Rule 9(b) Pleading Requirements for FCA Claims

On March 31, 2014, in U.S. ex rel. Nathan v. Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, the Supreme Court of the United States declined to review a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upholding a district...more

Court enforces False Claims Act’s first-to-file rule to bar complaint alleging details of off-label promotion scheme about which...

In Brief - When an alleged scheme to market drugs for unapproved “off-label” uses had already been identified by an earlier complaint, a later complaint providing additional details, but alleging the same “essential...more

Whistleblower’s one-two punch: Confidential informant/employee spurs criminal investigation, then successfully sues individual...

Schuylkill Products case highlights how a whistleblower can put an employer on track to face both criminal and civil proceedings under the False Claims Act....more

White Collar Watch - June 2014

In This Issue: - Whistleblower’s one-two punch: Confidential informant/employee spurs criminal investigation, then successfully sues individual company owner in qui tam action - Alleged illegal recruiting for...more

There Is No Bark to the Barko Case

I always enjoy listening to the legal “doomsayers” who love to propound hysterical claims in an effort to gain attention. It reminds me of little children screaming for attention. Unfortunately, in the case of lawyers...more

Second Circuit Dismisses $50 Million FCA Suit

Last week, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a False Claims Act (“FCA”) whistleblower suit seeking $50 million in damages from Huron Consulting Group Inc. (“Huron”) for...more

Whistleblowers Could be the First Responders Against Fraud

We knows who the first responders are. When a student opened fire at a Nevada middle school on Monday morning, October 21, 2013, teacher Michael Landsberry sacrificed his life to protect the children in the school. Teacher...more

White Collar Watch

In This Issue: - Federal court unseals rare False Claims Act complaint against home mortgage servicer - Qui tam relators target – and gain access to – internal investigation on ground that attorney-client...more

In Government's Shoes: The Continuing Force Behind the False Claims Act & Qui Tam Complaints

To combat fraud by contractors selling faulty war supplies to the Union Army, in 1863 President Abraham Lincoln signed into law the False Claims Act (the “FCA”). Designed to root out fraud on the federal government, this act...more

Federal Court Ruling Raises Questions About Privileged Nature Of Certain Internal Investigations

On March 6, 2013, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that Kellogg Brown & Root Services, Inc. (“KBR”) must produce to a qui tam relator 89 documents relating to internal investigations...more

U.S. District Court Rules that Results of Internal Investigations Conducted in the Ordinary Course of Business are Not Privileged...

A recent decision by a federal district court raises concerns about the ability of companies to claim privilege over the results of internal investigations. In United States ex rel. Harry Barko v. Halliburton Company, et al.,...more

Biotech Company to Pay over $22 Million for Marketing Off-Label Use of Products

Two whistleblowers used the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act (FCA) to file lawsuits against biotechnology company Genzyme Corp. for teaching doctors and other medical staff how to create a "slurry" version of its...more

False Claim Act: 2013 Year in Review

Last year continued the trend of robust False Claims Act (FCA) enforcement by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and proliferating qui tam lawsuits brought by whistleblowers on behalf of the United States. In 2012, DOJ...more

Justice Department Announces $3.8 Billion In False Claims Act Recoveries In FY 2013

On December 20, 2013, the Justice Department announced a total of $3.8 billion dollars in settlements and judgments from civil cases involving the False Claims Act for Fiscal Year (FY) 2013. Total recoveries under the False...more

Influential Appeals Court Rejects Attempt by Former In-House Counsel to Use Privileged Information Against Company in...

The pool of potential qui tam relators may have just shrunk a little, based on a recent decision by the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals that has put the ability of in-house lawyers to become qui tam relators into serious...more

Lessons from Frankenstein: Don't Create a Whistleblower

Given the publicity generated by large settlements paid to whistleblowers, many individuals are regularly on the prowl for a qui tam lawsuit that will yield a large bounty. These eager whistleblowers may be likely to pursue a...more

State and Federal False Claims Act Defendant Seeks to Prevent Use of Claims Documents in Case Filed By Former Employees

United States ex rel. Bahnsen v. Boston Scientific Neuromodulation Corp., No. 11 CV 1210 (SDW) (MCA) (D.N.J.).: Two former employees of Boston Scientific Neuromodulation Corporation (BSNC) – one from its Customer Service...more

Want to Turn on Your Employer? There’s an App for That.

Plaintiffs’ firms looking to capitalize on the growth in whistleblower litigation are turning to smart phone technology to try to gain a competitive edge. Well-known Delaware plaintiffs’ class action law firm Grant &...more

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