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The false claims act and your right to a lawsuit

The False Claims Act is also known as qui tam, and it is an act that allows those with evidence of fraud against the federal government's programs and contracts to sue. This individual is suing on behalf of the government, which means that the person can receive compensation for filing the claim. The government may choose to participate in the action if it decides it needs to. If not, then you can proceed without the government's involvement.

Anyone who has proof or evidence of fraud against the government's programs or contracts has the right to pursue a qui tam lawsuit. The exception to this rule is if the government or another party has already filed a lawsuit using the same evidence. If that has occurred, then you are not legally allowed to bring a lawsuit to court.

What kinds of things constitute a violation of the False Claims Act?

Using a false statement or record to have a claim paid by the government is an illegal act and could result in a False Claim's Act violation. Conspiring with others to do the same is a violation. Using false statements or records to avoid, decrease or hide the obligation to pay or give property to the government is a violation of the law. Additionally, presenting a false claim for payment is a violation of the law.

Thanks to whistleblower protections, you should not face retaliation for filing a qui tam lawsuit. Your attorney can help you start the process, so you can focus on revealing the fraud that is hurting the government.

Source: Whistleblowers.org, "False Claims Act/Qui Tam FAQ," accessed April 24, 2017

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