Department Of Justice Releases New Statistics About Sealed False Claims And Qui Tam Cases

At the beginning of February, the Department of Justice, in conjunction with the Department of Health and Human Services, released a number of statistics regarding qui tam cases filed under the False Claims Act. As of January 4, 2011 there were 1,341 qui tam actions under investigation in the United States; each of them awaiting a decision as to whether or not the government will intervene.

Qui Tam cases are filed "under seal" meaning that the case is filed in secret so that the public and even the defendant are unaware that the case has been filed. This allows the government to investigate the case prior to any allegations being made public.

Just of 66% of all qui tam actions currently on file allege some form of health care fraud. The whistleblowers who have brought these actions come from a wide variety of backgrounds and professions, from hospital administrators to pharmaceutical sales representatives. 98% of all sealed health care cases allege fraud against Medicare or Medicaid.

From October 1, 2006 to January 4, 2011, the government made intervention decisions in 1,644 cases and actually intervened in approximately 1 out of every 5 cases. Of the cases that have had intervention decisions in the past 5 years, the average time under seal is 13 months.