QUI TAM - Whistle Blower Questions
What is Qui Tam?
Qui tam is a provision of the federal False Claims Act that allows private citizens to file “whistleblower” lawsuits in the name of the federal government for fraud by government contractors and others who receive or use government funds, and share in any money recovered. To encourage whistleblowers to come forward, the law grants them 15 to 30 percent of the money the government recovers. Although most of the early successes in qui tam actions were against defense contractors, for the last several years, health care has accounted for the lion’s share of settlements and judgments. In 2005, the federal government obtained over $1.1 billion in association with qui tam actions, with whistleblower shares amounting to $166 million.
I think my employer is filing false Medicare claims. What should I do?
Potential whistleblowers should consult an attorney - most of whom, if they have experience with "qui tam" lawsuits, will review the case without charge.
Can my employer fire or retaliate against me for filing a qui tam action?
Under the federal False Claims Act, a company cannot fire, demote, suspend or in any way discriminate against an employee investigating, initiating or assisting in a false claims case. If it does, whistleblowers are entitled to reinstatement, two times the amount of back pay plus interest, compensation for litigation costs and other compensation. They also can file wrongful termination lawsuits in state courts.
For more detailed questions regarding Qui Tam Whistle Blower cases, please click here.