Through the False Claims Act, federal and state governments have created a tool that allows them to recovery money fraudulently obtained or withheld that is owed to them for many different reasons. Citizens who are witnesses to fraud committed against the government have the ability to reap potentially large awards by bringing a lawsuit on behalf of the government. Under most "whistleblower" statutes it is important that anyone aware of government fraud be the "first to file" in order to secure an interest in any case they may have. This is extremely time sensitive because if someone with knowledge of fraud is not the "first to file" then the value of their knowledge of the fraud and ability to bring a case can be lost. Below is a list of common ways in which people and companies defraud federal and state governments:
- Hospitals, Pharmacies or Doctors Fraudulently Billing Medicare or Medicaid
- Brokerage Firm or Bank Fraud
- Underpayment of Oil & Gas Royalties on Public Lands
- Fraudulent Tax Returns
- Misrepresentation of Product Safety to Food and Drug Administration
If you or someone you know is a witness to government fraud at your job or through other special knowledge, it is important to contact an experienced attorney immediately in order to protect your rights and any potential whistleblower claim.