There is a tendency for lawyers to look gift horses in the mouth. That said, says R. Scott Oswald writing in Law360, the recent 8-0 Escobar ruling in the U.S. Supreme Court was a massive win for whistleblowers and the False Claims Act:
In a unanimous 8-0 decision, and with an opinion authored by Justice Thomas, the U.S. Supreme court has affirmed that “FCA liability for failing to disclose violations of legal requirements does not turn upon whether those requirements were expressly designated as conditions of payment.”
The ‘Big Four’ accounting firms rake in a combined total of over $100 billion dollars a year, and are supposed to give the public some confidence that the companies being audited are not involved in chicanery.
Needless to say, that’s not always true. In fact, sometimes the Big Four accounting firms are part of the problem,
Companies are trying to get fired, scared, and cash-strapped employees to sign away their rights to any future whistleblower awards under the False Claims Act.
The Supreme Court will hear arguments in State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. v. United States ex rel. Rigsby. The central question: “What standard governs the decision whether to dismiss a relator's claim for violation of the False Claims Act's seal requirement?”
The Asercare case has been a procedural mess from the beginning, thanks in large part to the quixotic actions taken by U.S. Federal Judge Karon O. Bowdre.
In the pantheon of horrors uncovered by whistleblowers who have filed under the federal False Claims Act, the case of Dr. Farid Fata has a special place. From the appeal of Fata’s sentence comes this summation:
The Vermont False Claims Act became effective on May 18, 2015, and included a provision stating that the statute would be considered non-retroactive until March 15, 2016.
Former Warner Chilcott CEO Carl Reichel is in court this week, fighting criminal charges he conspired to pay kickbacks to doctors in return for stepped-up prescriptions for drugs manufactured and sold by Warner Chilcott.