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Author Archives: Jonathan Tycko

Chinese Earrings at Center of $400,000 False Claims Act Settlement for Unpaid Customs Duties by Former Jewelry Importer

TSI Accessories Group, Inc., a former jewelry importer, agreed to pay $402,637 to settle allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by failing to pay customs duties on sterling silver earring imports from China. The amount of customs duties owed depends on the item’s value—the more expensive the item is, the lower the duty […]

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Federal Judge in Texas Rules That Lying About Eligibility For 8(a) Business Development Program Violates False Claims Act; Whistleblower’s Qui Tam Case Can Move Forward

Another court has joined the growing chorus of judges who are singing the same tune on set-aside fraud:  when a government contractor lies about its eligibility for a set-aside contract, it violates the False Claims Act, and can be sued by either the Department of Justice or a whistleblower. The new case is United States […]

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Mortgage Company Agrees to Pay $24.9 Million to Settle Fraud Allegations Related to Federal Mortgage Insurance

Guild Mortgage Company (Guild) of San Diego, California, agreed to pay the U.S. government $24.9 Million to settle allegations that Guild violated the False Claims Act by knowingly breaching material program requirements when underwriting and originating mortgages insured by the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Federal Housing Administration (FHA). The settlement resolves allegations that […]

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Court of Appeals Issues Important Decision on Application of the False Claims Act to Set-Aside Contracts

On December 3, 2020, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued its decision in United States v. Strock (Strock), a ruling that will significantly strengthen the hand of the government, and of qui tam whistleblowers, in False Claims Act cases against companies awarded government set-aside contracts but do not meet the […]

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Blowing the Whistle On Healthcare Industry Kickback Schemes Often Results In Huge Awards To Whistleblowers.  Here’s Why.

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced that a major pharmaceutical company, Novartis Pharmaceuticals, agreed to pay $642 million to settle a lawsuit alleging that Novartis violated the False Claims Act (FCA).  That lawsuit was initially filed by a whistleblower under the “qui tam” provision of the FCA, which allows a private citizen to […]

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Healthcare Rehabilitation Provider Pays  $4 Million to Settle False Claims Act Allegations

Encore Rehabilitation Services LLC, a contract therapy company based in Farmington Hills, Michigan, agreed to pay $4.03 million to settle False Claims Act allegations that the company knowingly provided unnecessary Medicare services to patients in three Michigan facilities. The settlement resolves allegations that Encore provided unreasonable, unnecessary, or unskilled rehabilitation therapy and recorded individual therapy […]

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Department of Justice Report Shows Whistleblowers Consistently Rewarded through Qui Tam Lawsuits

Six Key Take-Aways From the 2019 False Claims Act Statistics Report    The False Claims Act remains a remarkably successful tool for fighting fraud on the government.  According to annual statistics just released by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), whistleblowers continue to collect handsome rewards for their brave efforts to root out and expose fraud […]

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Pharmaceutical Company Agrees To $54 Million To Settle False Claims Kickback Allegations

Teva Pharmaceuticals has agreed to pay $54 Million to settle false claims kickback allegations brought by two whistleblowers, Charles Arnstein and Hossam Senousy. In their 2013 complaint, the whistleblowers asserted that Teva Pharmaceuticals (“Teva”) violated the False Claims Act when the company knowingly induced physicians to prescribe two of the company’s drugs in exchange for […]

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A Qui Tam Defendant’s Presentations to Government During Investigation Was Found Unprotected from Discovery in Other Lawsuits, Federal District Court Ruled

In a recent decision, a federal district court judge ruled that a defendant’s presentations to the Department of Justice, made during the course of the Department’s investigation of a pending False Claims Act qui tam lawsuit, are not protected from discovery by the whistleblower who brought that lawsuit. The case is the United States and […]

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California Court Issues Ruling In Favor Of Whistleblower In Case Alleging Use Of Kickbacks In Violation Of California Insurance Fraud Prevention Act

On March 28, 2019, in an important victory for California whistleblowers, the Superior Court for the County of Orange held that Insurance Code section 1871.7, the Insurance Fraud Prevention Act (“IFPA”) applies to claims made to workers’ compensation insurers resulting from patient referrals induced by kickbacks.  Tycko & Zavareei LLP represents the plaintiff in this […]

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