Government Contracts Legal Forum

Trends In False Claims Act Enforcement - Part 1

Less than a week before most people departed for December holidays, the Department of Justice posted to its website its annual summary of False Claims Act matters and recoveries.  Among other data points, the FY 2012 summary reports the number of new FCA "matters" that were filed or opened, both by qui tam relators and the government, the amount of money that the government recovered through settlements and judgment during the year, and the amount of money recovered that went to qui tam relators.  In a series of posts, I'm going to examine what these statistics reveal about FCA enforcement trends.

The FCA--Better Than Apple, Inc. Stock

Lawyers love to talk about the "exponential growth" in FCA cases-especially plaintiff and defense lawyers.  But a look at the number of new cases filed each year shows that this is more than just malarkey: the number of new FCA cases is rising, and rising fast.  This illustration maps the number of new FCA matters, defined as "newly received referrals, investigations, and qui tam actions" since 2000.  

As shown, the number of new matters has doubled in the past ten years (2002 to 2012).  FCA enforcement is trending up.  But what industries are being targeted?  The DOJ summary further breaks-down these statistics by industry. 

As the following illustration shows, new FCA matters are predominately being initiated in the healthcare and non-Department of Defense (DoD) contexts.  This is not to say that there is less of a focus of DoD procurements, which seems to have remained consistent over the past decade, but that the government and qui tam relators are using the FCA to target new industries. 

Although the DOJ summary does not indicate what federal agency procurements are covered by the "Other" category, it would include GSA Schedule contracts and contracts with various executive agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Labor, Department of State, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, among others.  This should be a red flag for companies receiving federal funds that do not consider themselves to be a 'traditional' government contractor - educational institutions and other grant recipients, for example - that the FCA is no longer focused solely on defense contractors and healthcare fraud.

Trackbacks (0) Links to blogs that reference this article Trackback URL
Comments (0) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20004-2595
Phone: 202.624.2500
Fax: 202.628.5116
Orange County
3 Park Plaza, 20th Floor
Irvine, CA 92614-8505
Phone: 949.263.8400
Fax: 949.263.8414
New York
590 Madison Avenue, 20th Floor
New York, NY 10022-2524
Phone: 212.223.4000
Fax: 212.223.4134
1029 W. 3rd Avenue Suite #402
Anchorage, AK 99501
Phone: 907.865.2600
Los Angeles
515 South Flower St., 40th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Phone: 213.622.4750
Fax: 213.622.2690
11 Pilgrim Street
London, EC4V 6RN United Kingdom
Phone: +44.207.413.0011
Fax: +44.207.413.0333
San Francisco
275 Battery Street, 23rd Floor
San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: 415.986.2800
Fax: 415.986.2827
71, Rue Royale
Brussels, B - 1000 Belgium
Phone: +
Fax: +