The Federally False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. § 3729, which is also known as the Whistleblower Act, Qui Tam Statute or Lincoln Law was first enacted during the Civil War as a means to encourage well-intentioned individuals to report fraud against the federal government.
In the years since the False Claims Act was first enacted, this statute has afforded citizens the power and authority to file lawsuits against companies, individuals, and even state agencies for financial fraud that is committed against the government.
The Federal False Claims Act (FCA) prohibits any individual or business from submitting or causing to submit a false or fraudulent claim for payment. The FCA provides broad coverage and a majority of FCS cases involve:
- Health care fraud
- Insurance fraud
- Tax fraud
- Medicare/Medicaid fraud
- Financial industry fraud
- Defense contractor fraud
- Government construction fraud
Qui Tam Provision
In addition to granting citizens the authority to bring a lawsuit on behalf of the government, the FCA also has a qui tam provision. This provision allows the person who filed the case to share in the government’s award.
If a person successfully files an FCA claim they can receive between 15 and 30 percent that the government recovers.
In addition, an employee who files an FCA claim is entitled to protections from negative employment actions by their employer such as being fired, receiving a demotion, suffering suspensions, or other employment penalties.
If you have questions about filing a Federal False Claims lawsuit and qui tam, contact a member of our Charleston FCA Qui Tam team from Rosen Hagood.
Types of False Claims Act Lawsuits
Before you file an FCA claim, you should work closely with an experienced lawyer who is familiar with the intricate procedural and substantive laws that are entailed in an FCA lawsuit. Some of the most common types of FCA lawsuits include:
- Miscarriage and Overcharge claim – these claims occur when a person or a business knowingly presents a false statement or make a fraudulent claim in order to obtain a payment from the federal government. One of the most common examples of this is when a doctor makes a claim to the federal government for Medicare payments for services that were never delivered.
- False Certification Claims – these claims occur when a person or a business knowingly make or use a false record or make a false statement in order to obtain payment from the federal government.
- Reverse False Claims – These claims occur when a person or a business knowingly or improperly conceal that they have been overpaid for a service from the federal government.
- Conspiracy Claims – These claims occur when more than one person or business act together to violate any of the provisions of the False Claims Act.
Congress has drafted the False Claims Act to cover a broad range of activities and actions by private individuals and businesses, and have encouraged private individuals to come forward by offering financial incentives and employment protections.
These lawsuits have been incredibly effective at curtailing companies and individuals from engaging in fraudulent acts and have resulted in nearly 40 billion dollars worth of awards for individuals since 1986.
Contact a Charleston FCA Lawyer Today
If you are considering filing a False Claims Act suit, having the support and guidance of the experienced team of lawyers from Rosen Hagood from the beginning and through the entire process is one of the most effective ways of ensuring your claim is properly filed.
If you believe that you have information relating to a fraudulent submission against the federal government, contact a member of our FCA qui tam team to discuss your case.