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Dinsmore on FCA
News and Insights on the False Claims Act

We counsel and educate companies on internal whistleblower complaints
or other FCA compliance concerns. Read the latest, below.

 

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The False Claims Act (31 U.S.C. §§ 3729–3733, also called the "Lincoln Law") is an American federal law that imposes liability on persons and companies (typically federal contractors) who defraud governmental programs. It is the federal Government's primary litigation tool in combating fraud and its enforcement is big business for the government.

Latest News and Insight

Analysis MAY 2017

United States ex rel. Petratos v. Genentech, Inc.

Third Circuit Applies Escobar’s Heightened Materiality Standard to Affirm Dismissal of FCA Claims

By requiring the relator plead an alleged violation or misrepresentation was “material to the Government’s payment decision,” the court rejected FCA claims based on noncompliance with statutory conditions of payment alone and reinforced the FCA’s stringent materiality standard.

 Michelle Tupper Butler

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Analysis MAY 2017

United States ex rel. Hayes v. Allstate Ins. Co.

Second Circuit: The First-To-File Rule is Not Jurisdictional

The False Claims Act’s (FCA) first-to-file rule is beginning to erode in some federal circuits. The Second Circuit recently joined the D.C. Circuit’s minority position when it held that the first-to-file rule is not a jurisdictional bar to qui tam cases. Instead, the court  held the first-to-file rule is a defense that can be raised through a motion to dismiss arguing a relator failed to properly state a claim.

Joe W. Harper and Jin L. Choi

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NEWS MAY 2017

Abbot v. BP Exploration & Production

Fifth Circuit Reinforces Demanding Materiality Standard Required of
False Claims Act Plaintiffs

The decision handed False Claims Act (FCA) defendants another victory by applying the Supreme Court’s decision in Universal Health Services v. Escobar, 136 S.Ct. 1989 (2016) .... FCA defendants can expect similar defense-friendly rulings applying Escobar moving forward.

Laurie A. Witek and Andrew B. Cassady

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NEWS April 2017

U.S. ex rel. Schimelpfenig v. Dr. Reddy's Labs. Ltd.

Court Finds Escobar Prevents Relators from Using FCA as an All-Purpose Enforcement Tool

Eastern District of Pennsylvania ruling is a victory for defendants, as the court echoed and effectuated the Supreme Court’s pronouncement in Escobar that the FCA “is not an all-purpose antifraud statute, or a vehicle for punishing garden-variety breaches of contract or regulatory violations.”

 

Patrick M. Hagan and Kelly E. Pitcher

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NEWS April 2017

United States ex rel. Thomas v. Duke University

Duke Gains Home Court Advantage in Relator’s Qui Tam Action

Duke University and its co-defendants persuaded the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia that a qui tam action pending against it should instead unfold in Greensboro, North Carolina, 50 miles from the Durham campus.

 

Joe W. Harper and R. Samuel Gilley

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Analysis April 2017

Chapins v. Northwestern Community Services Board

West Virginia District Court Applies McDonnell Douglas Framework to FCA Retaliation Claim

Although the Fourth Circuit has yet to determine whether the McDonnell Douglas framework—a fundamental employment law doctrine—applies to whistleblower claims under the False Claims Act (FCA), the Western District of Virginia recently applied the burden-shifting framework when considering an FCA retaliation claim.

 

Joe W. Harper and Lauren L. Weiner

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News March 2017

United States ex rel. Shepard

District of Colorado Affirms Government’s Broad Discretion to Settle Qui Tam Case Over Relator’s Objections

This is important not only to the government but to FCA defendants, because cases like Shepard help prevent parties who are interested in a resolution from being held hostage by relators who are lobbying for an unwarranted recovery.

 

Joe W. Harper and Jan L. Hatcher

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