According to officials, the government has recovered $2.8 billion in false
claims cases with the assistance of whistleblowers. This monetary amount
is a yearly record high.
During fiscal year 2011, 636 qui tam lawsuits filed by whistleblowers. (In past years, about 300-400 complaints were submitted annually.) The Justice Department secured over $3 billion in judgments and settlements in civil fraud cases under the False Claims Act. $2.4 billion was related to fraud against federal healthcare programs, including Medicaid, Medicare, federal Employees Health Benefits, TRICARE, and Veterans Administration health programs.
Since 1986, when the False Claims Act was amended to provide stronger incentives for whistleblowers to come forward, there have been over 7,800 Qui Tam complaints filed. According Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division Tony West, 28% of the recoveries obtained from these occurred after Barack Obama became president.
The Obama Administration has made combating health care fraud a major priority. With the establishment of the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team (HEAT), the government has used the False Claims Act to get back over $6.6 in federal health care dollars in the last two years.
This past fiscal year, enforcement actions against members of the pharmaceutical industry resulted in the largest recoveries, with almost $2.2 billion in civil claims that were gotten back. $421 million was recovered from state Medicaid Fraud cases and $1.76 billion was for federal recoveries. Eight drug companies paid $900 million over allegations that they upped their profits through unlawful pricing. GlaxoSmithKline PLC paid $750 million to settle civil and criminal charges that it purposely turned in, or caused to be submitted, false claims for adulterate drugs and medications that weren’t in line with Food and Drug Administration specifications.
At the Gilbert Law Group, we know how much courage it takes to step forward and report fraudulent activity by your employers or others with whom you have an affiliation. This is one of the many reasons why you should seek experienced legal counsel that understands what is entailed in filing a whistleblower lawsuit.
Remember that it is key that you keep the information you have about the fraudulent activity confidential. Even limited public disclosure of what you know can bar you from being able to file your whistleblower claim.
Per the False Claims Act’s whistleblower provisions, you may be entitled to a percentage of whatever the government recovers because of the information that you provided.
Justice Department Recovers $3 Billion in False Claims Act Cases in Fiscal Year 2011, Justice.gov, December 19, 2011
What is the False Claims Act & Why is it Important?, The False Claims Act Legal Center
More Blog Posts:
Secret Whistleblower Played Key Role in Bank of New York Mellon Investigation, Product Liability Law Blog, October 13, 2011
Secret Whistleblower Played Key Role in Bank of New York Mellon Investigation, Product Liability Law Blog, October 31, 2011
Our whistleblower law firm represents clients throughout the US. Contact the Gilbert Law Group online or call 1-(303) 431-1111 and request your free case evaluation.