In recent years, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has obtained roughly $3 billion in settlements and judgements from civil cases involving fraud and false claims against the government. A large majority of this amount involves the health care industry: hospitals, physicians, drug and medical device manufacturers, managed care providers, hospice organizations, and pharmacies.
As the DOJ works to decrease the potential for fraud against the government, the scope of the False Claims Act (FCA) is broadened and the possibility for substantial repercussions rises, producing a need for any company operating in the health care space to have qualified legal counsel on their side.
We have handled all varieties of FCA claims, including allegations of Medicare or Medicaid improper payments, misrepresenting qualifications, and/or fraud and abuse laws violations. The DOJ continues to place great importance on the enforcement of the safeguards contained within the Anti-Kickback Statue (AKS) in order to ensure that medical services are provided to patients based on their medical needs and not as an attempt to improperly gain financial compensation. Additionally, any violations of the Stark Law (i.e., the Physician Self-Referral Law) can be raised in an FCA suit – violations that would result in a civil monetary penalty of over $20,000 for each false claim, in addition to liability for treble the amount of the government’s damages.
This intersection between the various health care laws and the FCA risks costly exposure, making the assistance of experienced, knowledgeable health care lawyers critical. The attorneys at The Health Law Partners, P.C., have experience representing clients in State and Federal FCA investigations and lawsuits, including those initiated by the Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Inspector General (OIG), and other regulatory agencies.
Conducting a prompt and thorough investigation into the matter at issue is an imperative first step in the defense of an FCA investigation, a step that may save our clients significant amounts of both money and time. With years of experience guiding our clients, we are also prepared to assist our clients through settlement and litigation, as needed.