The False Claims Act (FCA), enacted in 1863, allows whistleblowers to present a claim that someone has made false statements to obtain or retain government funds. Successful claimants will receive a percentage of any recovery. While many claims, such as healthcare and financial industry wrongs, are brought through the FCA, some claims are excluded from the FCA and others may be barred. An experienced qui tam attorney will review your claim to determine its viability in general and with regard to the False Claims Act.
Legal Exclusions Claims concerning IRS wrongs:
There is a specific exception in the FCA for tax claims. Tax claim wrongs are brought under the IRS Whistleblower act enacted in 2006. The IRS Whistleblower allows for triple damages and awards of 15-30 percent of the damages that are recovered.
Some actions are barred by the False Claims Act statute. These barred claims include:
• Armed forces claims: An action by a former or current member of the armed forces against another member of the armed forces arising out of the person’s service in the armed forces.
• Prior government knowledge: An action by a private person against a member of Congress, a member of the judiciary, or a senior executive branch official if the action is based on evidence or information known to the US government when the action was brought.
• Government is already a party: A private action based upon allegations or transactions that are the subject of a civil suit or an administrative civil money penalty proceeding in which the US government is already a party.
• Prior public disclosure: Unless the government objects, any actions which are substantially the same allegations or transactions as those that were already publicly disclosed.
There is a counter exception. Your claim can proceed, even if there is public knowledge, if you are an original source of the information. The term “original source” is a legal term of art that an experienced qui tam attorney will explain.
If you believe you have a whistleblower claim, contact the experienced qui tam lawyers at Begelman & Orlow, P. C.. Call 866-627-7052 for a free consultation today.