Whistleblower Law Collaborative Blog and News

Latest from Whistleblower Law Collaborative Blog and News

In a recent episode of Last Week Tonight, John Oliver explained drug compounding pharmacies and highlighted some of the problems they pose for regulators and the public. [embedded content] Drug compounders make medicine for people (and animals) whose medical needs cannot be met with FDA-approved products. Instead of obtaining drugs mass-produced by a pharmaceutical company, a patient can turn to a compounding pharmacy for custom-made medication. Compounding pharmacies allow medication to be tailored to the…
With the news that a White House Ukraine whistleblower is willing to speak to Congress, it appears inevitable that his or her identity will become public. Some have argued that the whistleblower should publicly make the case against the president. We and our partners are former government prosecutors who now represent whistleblowers alleging fraud against the government. Together, we have represented scores of whistleblowers raising allegations of impropriety under federal and state law. When necessary,…
It is both interesting and fun to be interviewed by television news reporters about a story, genetic testing fraud, that closely aligns with work one is doing.  It’s exciting to perform important newsworthy work and to be trusted as a source of expertise. Last week’s CBS News expose of genetic testing fraud against Medicare was wonderful in that way. We are well-acquainted with a variety of scams involving genetic testing fraud against Medicare. With that…
This article is a collaboration between Erica Blachman Hitchings, a member of the Whistleblower Law Collaborative LLC and Derek Adams a partner at Feldesman Tucker Leifer Fidell LLP.  Hitchings and Adams are both former trial attorneys at the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Fraud Section; Hitchings also served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California.  Adams currently handles the defense of FCA actions and other litigation/government investigations.  A version…
Whistleblower Law Collaborative co-founder Bob Thomas sits down with CBS news’ Jim Axelrod to discuss a massive medicare genetic testing scam.  Recruiters convince seniors to submit a DNA sample for a “free” genetic cancer test. Medicare is billed thousands of dollars. But the tests are unnecessary and many patients never receive any results. Bob Thomas, a former federal prosecutor, helped explain how the labs, recruiters, and doctors work together to drive the scam.  He explained…
Why is health care fraud such a big problem in this country?  Whistleblower Law Collaborative co-founder Bob Thomas and Member Erica Blachman Hitchings began their BU Law Seminar with this question. This year marks the tenth year of the “Health Care Fraud and Abuse” class.  Bob has taught the class since its start, and Erica joins this year.  For thirteen sessions, they will teach future lawyers about the dangers fraud pose to our health care…
The False Claims Act Tax Bar is a rule that says that the FCA does not apply when someone commits tax fraud.  The False Claims Act lets the government recover for any false or fraudulent requests or demands for money.  This also includes fraud to avoid paying money to the government. But due to the Tax Bar, the law does not apply to money owed to the IRS. This means that the FCA does not…
Law360 quotes Bob Thomas in its SEC whistleblowing piece “Publicizing Whistleblower Claims Doesn’t Always Pay Off.”  In particular, it discusses Harry Markopolos alleging $38 billion fraud by GE.  Markopolos may receive a reward for the report he gave to SEC. He also reported the fraud in the news.  He joined with a hedge fund to profit from loss to GE stock based on his report. Financial industry whistleblower Harry Markopolos, who has criticized delayed…
The Promise: Integra Medical Analytics Uses Data Mining to Stop Health Care Fraud If Essence Group illustrates the threat from analytics-powered billing, Integra Medical Analytics LLC v. Providence Health and Services, highlights the potential of data to ferret out fraud. No. CV 17-1694 (C.D. Cal 2017). HHS-OIG has long used data-mining in compliance audits. Likewise, state integrity offices do so under Medicaid. However, whether these techniques are available to private whistleblowers suing under the False…
Last month, tax whistleblowers received good news when the Taxpayer First Act (TFA) became law. This new law strengthens the IRS whistleblower program in two important ways – it adds anti-retaliation protections for whistleblowers, and it requires the IRS to notify whistleblowers when certain important developments occur in their cases. Congress created the IRS Whistleblower Reward Program in 2006 to encourage whistleblowers to provide information to the IRS about unpaid taxes. Where a whistleblower’s tip…