False Claims Act
The article, “A Whistleblower Hidden In Plain Sight: When Does an Employee Termination Risk a False Claims Act Filing?” (Jan/Feb) has at least two significant errors. First, it states, “The typical amount awarded to the relator, and negotiated by relator’s counsel, may be in the range of 5% to 15% when the government intervenes.” This is incorrect, as is the citation, note 24. The range is 15% to 25%, 31 U.S.C. §3730(d)(1).
The article also errs when it claims: “The DOJ requires hard evidence in the form of specific invoices, memoranda, emails, or other material to corroborate the testimony of the relator.” The authors cite no support for this because there is none. The article muddles government intervention with standards for summary judgment. The United States has intervened in my clients’ and other whistleblowers’ cases (following investigation), notwithstanding the clients’ lack of the article’s requisite “hard” evidence. See, e.g., United States Notice of Intervention, dkt. 16, United States ex rel. Green v. Tran, 5:15-cv-60-OC-41PRL (M.D. Fla. Dec. 5, 2019).
The False Claims Act encourages us to help fight fraud against the government. Overstating the burdens and understating the incentives is a disservice to your readers.
Thank you for correcting this.
Jonathan Kroner, Miami