Published: February 14, 2018

The recent leak of an internal U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ or Department) memorandum setting forth considerations for dismissal of civil cases brought under the False Claims Act (FCA) offers helpful guidance not only to DOJ lawyers handling qui tam cases, but also to defense counsel representing companies alleged to have violated the FCA. The memorandum, dated January 10, 2018, and authored by Michael D. Granston, Director of the DOJ Commercial Litigation Branch, Fraud Section, is addressed to all attorneys in that branch as well as to all Assistant U.S.

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Published: January 23, 2018

In United States ex rel. Angela Ruckh v. Salus Rehabilitation, LLC, et. al., No. 8:11-CV-1303-T-23TBM (M.D. Fla. Jan. 11, 2018), the Middle District of Florida vacated a jury award totaling nearly $350 million because the plaintiff had not met the heightened standard of materiality and scienter for federal False Claims Act (“FCA”) claims established by the U.S. Supreme Court in Universal Health Services v. Escobar, 136 S. Ct. 1989 (2016).

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Published: October 9, 2017

The Eighth Circuit in Simpson v. Bayer Healthcare became the latest circuit court to weigh in on the meaning of the “original source” exception to the False Claims Act’s public disclosure jurisdictional bar.  The public disclosure bar prohibits private citizens from pursuing qui tam actions based on information that had been publicly disclosed prior to the relator’s lawsuit, “unless . . .

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Published: September 13, 2017

​A trial court in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania recently ruled that the whistleblower protections of the Dodd-Frank Act and Sarbanes-Oxley Act (“SOX”) do not necessarily apply to employees of private entities, even if those entities perform work for publicly-traded companies.  The court reached this conclusion in dismissing the Plaintiff’s complaint in Reyher v. Grant Thornton LLP, No. 16-CV-1757.

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Published: August 23, 2017

In a recent False Act Claims (FCA) suit involving the blockbuster cancer drug Avastin, the Third Circuit barred a relator’s qui tam suit because his Complaint lacked sufficient factual allegations that, if true, would establish the FCA’s “materiality” element as defined in Universal Health Services v. Escobar.

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Published: June 27, 2017

It’s been just over a year since the Supreme Court’s seminal False Claims Act (“FCA”) decision Universal Health Servs., Inc. v. United States ex rel. Escobar. In the wake of Escobar, the lower courts are confronted with applying Escobar’s materiality standard to the particular facts of their cases.

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Published: March 30, 2017

In United States ex rel. Hirt v. Walgreen Company, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit recently affirmed the dismissal of a pharmacy owner’s False Claims Act (“FCA”) lawsuit because he failed to plead his fraud claims with particularity. In so doing, the Court clarified a gray area in its prior case law: the Court instructed that FCA relators like this pharmacy owner are not entitled to a “relaxed” pleading standard.

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Published: October 26, 2016

A Texas appellate court recently affirmed a judgment against a healthcare consulting firm that claimed that its former employee had misappropriated its confidential information to use in a False Claims Act (“FCA”) lawsuit against the consulting firm’s largest client.  The consulting firm, MJS and Associates, LLC (“MJS”), claimed that the employee’s conduct violated confidentiality agreements she had signed and caused MJS to lose business.&n

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