Category: Settlements

False Claims Act: New Developments for an Old Law

Alex Hontos

The past 18 months have been a (relatively) wild time for the False Claims Act — on the books since 1863. In FY2018 the Department of Justice obtained more than $2.8 billion in settlements and judgments from cases involving fraud and false claims against the United States government. Add to this staggering statistic the fallout of the Supreme Court’s decision in Universal Health Services Inc....

Software Provider and DOJ Reach $8.6M Settlement for FCA Case Involving Alleged Cyber Security Shortcomings

Jack Huerter

Amid increased public and government attention to cyber security, a qui tam plaintiff’s lawsuit has resulted a large settlement for a government contractors’ purported misrepresentations regarding compliance with government cyber security standards. In what is believed to be the first-of-its-kind settlement of an FCA claim premised upon cyber security misrepresentations, Cisco Systems recently agreed to pay $8.6 million to the federal and state governments. The...

An Ambulance Provider’s Long Road to Settlement

Vanessa J. Szalapski

On June 20, 2019, more than six years after the case was first set into motion by the Relator, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland announced in a press release that Hart to Heart Ambulance Services, Inc. (“Hart to Heart”) settled a false claims act case—which alleged that it submitted false claims to Medicare for ambulance transports that were not medically necessary—for...

Alleged Violations of Government Data Security Requirements Yield FCA Settlement

T. Augustine Lo

On May 31, 2019, U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister of the District of Kansas announced a $250,000 settlement with Coffey Health System to resolve a False Claims Act case.  The case arose from allegations that the hospital’s patient data security was insufficient to justify an incentive payment from the federal government.  The two whistleblowers each will receive $50,000 from the settlement. In 2016, two whistleblowers filed...

Sutter Health LLC Pays $30 Million to Settle Alleged Overpayment of Medicare Advantage Funds, but Faces Similar Allegations in Separate Qui Tam

Erin Conti

On April 12, 2019, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Sutter Health LLC—along with its affiliates Sutter East Bay Medical Foundation, Sutter Pacific Medical Foundation, Sutter Gould Medical Foundation, and Sutter Medical Foundation—would pay $30 million to settle allegations they provided inaccurate information about Medicare Advantage Plan beneficiaries in order to receive inflated payments. The settlement stems from a coordinated effort between the U.S. Department...

Relator Strikes Twice Against Walgreens

Vanessa J. Szalapski

For those who pay close attention to FCA settlements, the January 22 press release from the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York of a $60 million settlement against Walgreens related to its Prescription Savings Club (“PSC”) program should not come as a complete surprise. In an earlier press release, almost two years ago to the day, the Southern District of New...

For FY2018, Justice Department Touts Nearly $3 Billion in False Claims Act Recoveries, Mostly From Qui Tams and Alleged Healthcare Frauds

David Green

The Justice Department announced in a recent press release that it obtained more than $2.8 billion in settlements and judgments from cases involving fraud and false claims against the government. The vast majority of this amount—$2.1 billion—came from lawsuits filed by whistleblowers, or “relators” suing on behalf of the government, under the qui tam provisions of the False Claim Act (“FCA”). Included in the qui...

Energy & Process Corp. Settles Whistleblower Action Related to Construction of Nuclear Waste Treatment Facility

Erin Conti

On Monday, April 24, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that Energy & Process Corp. agreed to pay $4.6 million to settle False Claims Act allegations concerning the construction of a large nuclear waste treatment facility in South Carolina. The allegations came to light as part of a whistleblower action brought by a former employee of a principal E&P subcontractor in late 2013. The federal...

Court Examines Standard for Approval of Settlement of Qui Tam Over a Relator’s Objection

Betsy Sellers

The False Claims Act (FCA) allows plaintiffs/relators to bring qui tam actions, in which the government may then elect to intervene.  The FCA also provides that “[t]he Government may settle a [qui tam] action with the defendant notwithstanding the objections of the person initiating the action if the court determines, after a hearing, that the proposed settlement is fair, adequate, and reasonable under all the...

Omnicare Inc. Settles Kickback Allegations for $28 Million

Nicole Burgmeier

The United States Justice Department (DOJ) announced this week that Omnicare, Inc. (Omnicare), the largest nursing home pharmacy in the United States, will pay approximately $28 million dollars to resolve charges that it received kickbacks from Abbott Laboratories (Abbott) to promote Abbott’s anti-epileptic drug, Depakote, to nursing home patients. According to the press release, Omnicare, whose consultant pharmacists review nursing home resident’s medical charts and...