The qui tam lawyers of Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto represent whistleblowers who file lawsuits under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act to expose fraud in government contracting and procurement.
Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto is one of the nation’s most successful qui tam law firms. Our qui tam whistleblower attorneys are experienced in representing whistleblowers seeking rewards under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.
Initially enacted by President Lincoln to curb rampant profiteering during the Civil War, the False Claims Act is the most effective whistleblower law ever passed to protect and reward whistleblowers who expose fraud in government contracting. Acting under the law’s qui tam whistleblower provisions, the qui tam whistleblower attorneys at Kohn, Kohn and Colapinto have helped clients recover hundreds of millions of dollars that government contractors had stolen from American taxpayers.
Qui tam whistleblower Dr. Aaron Westrick forced the recall of thousands of unsafe bulletproof vests sold to law enforcement and members of the U.S. military. Dr. Westrick worked as a senior manager for the largest manufacturer of bulletproof vests. As a qui tam whistleblower, he fought to protect police officers by forcing defective bulletproof vests off the market. In June 2005, the Department of Justice (DOJ) intervened in the false claims act lawsuit. Two weavers, Barrday and Hexcel, settled with the DOJ for $1 million and $15 million respectively.
In related actions, the government has collected tens of millions as a direct result of Dr. Westrick’s disclosures. Second Chance admitted liability in its bankruptcy proceeding and paid the United States millions of dollars in damages. Dr. Westrick also prevailed in a related action filed under the State of California’s False Claims Act. On March 15, 2018, the DOJ announced a settlement in which the Japanese manufacturer of Zylon, Toyobo Co., Ltd., agreed to pay the United States $66 million. The final victory, in this case, came on July 16, 2018, by a settlement with former Second Chance president and CEO Richard C. Davis, who agreed to pay the government $125,000 to settle claims related to the False Claims Act suit filed against Second Chance.
In another case, Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto represented the crucial whistleblower in one of the largest pharmaceutical case-recoveries in history, which resulted in Bristol-Meyers Squibb having to pay the U.S. government over $500 million to settle the case. The accusation against the pharmaceutical company was that it was illegally marketing drugs that increased Medicare and Medicaid costs. The allegations came from a whistleblower who was a former employee. See: Bristol-Myers Squibb to Pay More Than $515 Million to Resolve Allegations of Illegal Drug Marketing and Pricing
Frequently Asked Questions
Most of the reward laws have a mandatory minimum and maximum award level. Under the False Claims Act and IRS whistleblower law the minimum award is 15% and the maximum award if 30%. Under the Security Exchange Act, Commodity Exchange Act and FCPA the minimum award is 10% and the maximum award if 30%. To qualify for a reward the whistleblower’s original information must be responsible for a successful enforcement action or prosecution.
The term qui tam is a Latin phrase which means “in the name of the King.” Qui tam lawsuits or claims allow individuals to earn financial rewards on the government’s behalf if their disclosures lead to successful enforcement actions. Permitting whistleblowers to use qui tam laws to obtain rewards is now incorporated into many modern whistleblower laws, including the False Claims Act.
Yes. Non-U.S. citizens can hire whistleblower attorneys. CFTC whistleblowers who live outside of the U.S. can hire attorneys to assist in filing their Dodd-Frank Act or Commodity Exchange Act case. In order to file an anonymous claim, you are required to hire a licensed U.S. attorney. Request a free consultation with an experienced attorney today.
Many whistleblower attorneys work for a “contingency” fee. In a contingency fee case the clients do not pay any attorney’s fees. If the whistleblower loses his or her case, they do not owe the attorney any money. If the whistleblower wins the case, the contingency payment for the attorney is generally between 30-40% of the award.
Originally signed in 1863 by President Lincoln, the federal False Claims Act was modernized in 1986 and is first contemporary whistleblower reward law. Other reward laws are modeled on the False Claims Act.
In a qui tam action, a private party known as a relator or a whistleblower brings an action on the government’s behalf against a person or company who is believed to have violated the law. The qui tam whistleblower can receive monetary rewards if their disclosures result in a successful enforcement action. Each qui tam law has its own filing procedures and rules. These include laws covering government procurement and contracting, Medicaid or Medicare frauds, securities and commodities frauds, tax evasion or the underpayment of taxes, money laundering, and foreign bribery, among others.
The concept of qui tam, which allows individuals to qualify for financial rewards on the government’s behalf if their disclosures lead to successful enforcement actions, is incorporated into many modern whistleblower laws, including the False Claims Act.
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