Qui Tam Lawyer
When handling medical claims for government programs such as Medicare or Medicaid, there are many situations in which a business partakes in fraudulent activity. Often times, if this fraudulent activity is brought to the attention of the employer, they might be retaliated against. However, you may be entitled to compensation if your case recovers funds for the government. This is known as a qui tam lawsuit.
A qui tam lawsuit is a civil lawsuit that whistleblowers can bring under the False Claims Act. As a whistleblower, you can help the government stop various types of fraud. Through the False Claims Act, whistleblowers are protected because of the risks they take to expose the fraudulent activity occurring against the government.
How Do You Know if You Need a Qui Tam Lawyer?
If a False Claim lawsuit is successful, a whistleblower can be awarded about 15% to 20% of the amount recovered. So, what actions are considered a violation of the False Claims Act?
- Knowingly presenting a fraudulent claim to the government for payment
- Knowingly using a false record to get a claim paid by the government
- Knowingly using a false record to conceal, avoid or decrease a payment to the federal government
The most common types of claims pursued under the False Claim Act are healthcare fraud, financial industry fraud, defense contractor fraud, and grant fraud.
- Healthcare Fraud – Over the past 20 years, whistleblowers have helped the federal government recover billions of dollars in Medicare fraud. Among this fraud is misrepresentation of diagnoses, unlawful billing, self-referrals and off-label promotion of drugs. These are only a few of the practices that have been uncovered in False Claims Act cases.
- Financial Industry Fraud – There are various types of financial industry fraud including financial assistance fraud. In this situation, a bank may request financial assistance from TARP. However, the bank might not use the money as they were intended to. Other types of fraud in the financial industry include mortgage fraud, loan fraud, and securities pricing fraud.
- Defense Contractor Fraud – When the government hires private companies for the United States’ defense services, these companies have often made false claims in order to overcharge for goods and services.
- Grant Fraud – The government funds research and programs throughout the country each year. Grant fraud occurs when the funds are used for purposes other than research or what they are designated for.
These are only several fraud cases that the government investigates each year. If you are aware of fraud against the federal government, you should contact a qui tam lawyer for more information.
Once a claim is filed, it remains confidential. The government will then investigate the claim by interviewing witnesses, and other necessary investigations to determine the validity of the claim.
Selecting a Qui Tam Lawyer
When choosing a qui tam lawyer, you must take some factors into consideration. These include experience with qui tam or False Claims Act cases. The attorney should also have experience in representing the whistleblower in these cases. Ask about previous cases and find out how much they have recovered for their clients.
You should also get as much information as possible about each step of the case. If you have never been through this process before it can be overwhelming, so you should work with a qui tam lawyer who you are comfortable with.
Blowing the whistle on a company that is scamming the government out of billions of dollars can be very rewarding. If you are aware of fraudulent activity, you should seek the advice of a qui tam lawyer.
“An Introduction to Whistleblower/Qui Tam Claims.” Shauna Itri. American Bar Association. Web. <https://www.americanbar.org/groups/young_lawyers/publications/the_101_201_practice_series/an_introduction_to_whistleblower_qui_tam_claims.html>
“Employment Law: How a Qui Tam Whistleblower Case Works.” Robin Page West, Esq. ExpertLaw. Web. https://www.expertlaw.com/library/employment/qui-tam.html