False Claims Act
The federal False Claims Act (FCA) allows private individuals to sue companies for fraud or theft committed on the federal government. In these suits, which are also known as “Qui Tam’” suits or “whistleblower” suits, the plaintiff sues on behalf of the US government to recover up to three times the actual amount by which the defendant defrauded the government, as well as other damages
The FCA creates a strong financial incentive for whistleblowers with personal knowledge of fraud on the US government to report that fraud. A plaintiff may receive as much as 15% to 25% of the penalties recovered in an FCA lawsuit.
The FCA was enacted during the Civil War to combat war profiteers who sold the US military defective armaments, supplies, and rations. As Abraham Lincoln so eloquently noted:
Worse than traitors in arms are the men who pretend loyalty to the flag, feast and fatten on the misfortunes of the nation while patriotic blood is crimsoning the plains of the south and their countrymen are moldering in the dust.
What began in Lincoln’s day as a concern over the unscrupulous sale of sick horses and mules, faulty rifles and ammo, and rancid provisions to the US Army and its troops has, in modern times, evolved into modern problems involving programs involving huge government spending. These problems were epitomized in the 1980s by reports of defense contractors selling armed forces $900 hammers and $500 toilet seats.
The FCA may apply wherever federal monies are received fraudulently or illegally, including but not limited to:
- Medicare fraud
- Medicaid fraud
- housing programs
- defense contracting
- education grants
- part suppliers
- environmental certifications
- emergency relief programs
Fraud on the government is theft on all of us as taxpayers. If you are a whistleblower who has been employed by or otherwise has personal knowledge of a company who has defrauded the government, contact the Mauriello Law Firm to discuss whether you have a meritorious False Claims Act case. The Mauriello Law Firm has substantial experience with False Claims Act Qui Tam cases and would be pleased to discuss your potential case, confidentially and without obligation.