News & Analysis as of

Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Holds Whistleblower Protection Is Not Available

The False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. §3729 et seq. (FCA), provides for triple damages and a penalty ranging from $5,500 to $11,000 per claim for anyone who knowingly submits or causes the submission of a false or fraudulent claim...more

The False Claims Act and the Health Care Industry: 2014 Year in Review

On Nov. 20, 2014, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced settlements and judgments for False Claims Act (“FCA”) cases totaling $5.7 billion (compared to $3.8 billion in fiscal year 2013), $2.3 billion of which was...more

Supreme Court Rejects Whistleblower’s Double-Dip Attempt

On Monday the United States Supreme Court declined to hear Danny Smart’s appeal of the Fifth Circuit’s rejection of his attempt to share in the proceeds of a $5 million settlement of a False Claims Act suit brought by another...more

11th Circuit Brings Back Part of Whistleblower Suit

According to the ruling of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, a former health care executive that exposed a kickback and illegal referral scheme by his employer will be allowed to proceed with certain allegations listed...more

Federal Judge Awards Attorneys’ Fees to Defendant in Dismissed Qui Tam Case, Calls Whistleblower a “Serial Relator”

In November 2013 and this past October, Mintz Levin’s Health Care Qui Tam Update highlighted three separate qui tam False Claims Act (FCA) cases filed by Fox RX, Inc. (Fox), a former Medicare Part D plan sponsor. Fox filed...more

Sixth Circuit: Job Applicant Cannot Claim Retaliation under FCA for Prior Whistleblowing Activities

Gary Vander Boegh worked as a landfill manager for the U.S. Department of Energy. While there, Vander Boegh engaged in what he claimed was protected whistleblowing activity, including reporting environmental violations that...more

Sixth Circuit Decision Confirms that Employers May Lawfully Choose Not to Hire a Job Applicant with a Prior History as a False...

Some employers in the health care and other industries who regularly deal with the federal government and are subject to the False Claims Act (“FCA”) have felt helpless in trying to weed out serial whistleblowers in the...more

Mintz Levin Health Care Qui Tam Update - Recent Developments & Unsealed Cases: November 2014

Trends & Analysis - In the period covered by this issue, we have identified 68 whistleblower cases related to health care that were unsealed. In this Qui Tam Update, we analyze the trends and take an in-depth look at...more

Eleventh Circuit Limits Scope of FCA Whistleblower Suit

Late last month, a three-judge panel of the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated portions of a former executive’s False Claims Act (“FCA”) whistleblower action against Health Management Associates Inc. (“HMA”),...more

Sixth Circuit Dismisses Whistleblower’s Claims Made By Job Applicant

This week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled that a job applicant lacks standing to bring whistle-blower claims under the Energy Reorganization Act and the False Claims Act (“FCA”) because those laws’...more

Changing Regulatory Regime Necessitates New Solutions To An Old Problem: 5 Elements Critical To An Anti-Fraud Compliance Program

US government regulators have become more aggressive in their detection and enforcement of fraud against the government. One of the key tools they are using to combat such fraud is the False Claims Act. Most FCA cases are...more

Government turns up the heat with the False Claims Act – 5 action steps for healthcare providers

Forbes magazine has dubbed 2014 “The Year of the Whistleblower.” For healthcare providers, this designation has translated into millions of dollars in fines and penalties and the initiation of criminal investigations. ...more

Job Applicant Denied Whistleblower Protection in Sixth Circuit

Job applicants lack standing to bring whistleblower retaliation claims under the False Claims Act (FCA) and the Energy Reorganization Act (ERA) because they are not “employees,” according to the Sixth Circuit Court of...more

DOJ Criminal Division Renews Efforts to Investigate Whistleblower Allegations

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has signaled a heightened effort to bring criminal prosecutors into the loop regarding False Claims Act referrals and other whistleblower complaints. In recent remarks at a conference comprised...more

New False Claims Act Whistleblower Trends Revealed in Recent Verdict: What Can We Learn?

On October 20, 2014 in a case brought by a whistleblower under the False Claims Act (“FCA”), a federal jury handed down a $175 million verdict in favor of the plaintiff. While the outcome was newsworthy because of its size...more

Seventh Circuit: No Fraud in Billing Medicaid More than Private Insurers for Drugs

Last Wednesday the Seventh Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a whistleblower suit brought by a pharmacist against his former employer, the Shopko pharmacy chain, for what he alleged was fraudulent billing of Medicaid by...more

November Generality-in-Pleading Award

We’re only one-third of the way through the month of November, but we already have a winner of November’s Generality-in-Pleading Award. The hands-down winner is Dr. Warren Troxler, whose False Claims Act whistleblower suit...more

Whistleblowers Must Have Independent Knowledge to Actually Blow the Whistle

To bring a valid qui tam action and overcome the so-called “public disclosure bar” under the False Claims Act (“FCA”), a whistleblower must have direct knowledge of the alleged fraudulent activity, independent of already...more

Recent Developments in Cases Dealing with the False Claims Act’s First-to-File and Public Disclosure Bars

The False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. §§ 3729-3733, enables whistleblowers—also known as qui tam relators— to file fraud suits on behalf of the United States against private government contractors. With the assistance of qui tam...more

California Court Finds Lack of Evidence Undermines False Claims Act and Retaliation Claims

The Southern District of California recently issued a favorable ruling for employers under both the False Claims Act and California’s retaliatory discharge provision codified at California Labor Code section 1102.5. The court...more

Blog: Study Shows Whistleblower Complaints Lead To Increased Penalties And Likelihood Of Enforcement

An academic study, first reported by the WSJ, concludes that, in regulatory enforcement actions brought by the SEC and DOJ alleging financial misrepresentation, employee whistleblowers have a consequential impact on...more

Blog: Litigation Round-Up: Some Recent Drug & Device Settlements, Investigations, Inquiries

Settlements - Pharmaceutical company Organon Inc. agreed to pay $31 million to settle federal and state allegations that it underpaid Medicaid drug rebates, provided kickbacks to nursing home pharmacy companies,...more

With Prejudice: Judge Dismisses FCA Claim and Orders Sanctions Against Attorney

On October 16, 2014, United States Magistrate Judge Jeremiah McCarthy of the Western District of New York issued a Report and Recommendation to District Judge William Skretny in which he recommended dismissal with prejudice...more

False Claims Act Does Not Protect An Employee Disclosing His Whistleblower History

On October 20, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio found that the False Claims Act (“FCA”) did not protect an employee who was fired after revealing his history as a whistleblower and offering...more

Good News for Guilty Whistleblowers!

Want to be a whistleblower but worried your own wrongdoing will prevent it? If so, Tuesday’s decision by a federal court in Texas should come as welcome news. In that long-running False Claims Act case, the court rejected a...more

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