Archive for 2019

Attorney Jesse Hoyer Fights Fraud, carrying on firm legacy

James Hoyer law firm Shareholder & Partner Jesse Hoyer

Attorney Jesse Hoyer is a partner and shareholder of the James Hoyer law firm. She carries on the legacy of her parents, former prosecutors who founded the firm. Watch the video below to learn more about her.

Attorney Jesse Hoyer explains how she helps clients.

Jesse’s main area of practice is False Claims Act – Whistleblower litigation, which is essentially fighting fraud against the government. Her area of specialty is education fraud, specifically cases involving for-profit colleges that abuse government financial aid funding. She also handles cases involving healthcare, big pharma, and defense contractor fraud, among others.

If you are a potential whistleblower with information that your company is improperly billing the U.S. government, you can request a confidential evaluation here: http://www.jameshoyer.com/contact-us/

**Be sure to let us know that you learned more about Jesse and the firm by watching this video.

 

Rare Case of Patient Whistleblower leads to Successful Settlement

AgeVital agrees to pay $775,000 to settle kickback claims

[*See video below on coverage of the settlement on WFLA channel 8 in Tampa. James Hoyer Attorney Jesse Hoyer is interviewed*]

SARASOTA, FL – The action of one patient who recognized possible fraud against Medicare led to this settlement which returns nearly one million dollars to taxpayers.  Vital Life Institute LLC, known as AgeVital Pharmacy LLC, along with owners Jenny and William Wilkins, have agreed to pay at least $775,000 to resolve claims that they violated the False Claims Act by engaging in an illegal kickback scheme.

“The importance of this settlement goes far beyond the amount recovered. It demonstrates the value and impact of everyday citizens who come forward to expose fraud,” said attorney Jesse Hoyer, local counsel for the whistleblower case. “Medicare, Medicaid and Tricare beneficiaries who carefully review their Explanation of Benefits statements can make a difference.”

The settlement resolves allegations that Sarasota-based AgeVital paid kickbacks to a third-party marketing company to solicit patients for compounded drug prescriptions, regardless of patient need. The marketing company allegedly arranged for prescribers to sign those prescriptions, which were then referred to AgeVital to be filled in exchange for a substantial share of Tricare and Medicare reimbursements.

Details of case

The case was filed in federal court in Tampa in 2015, after Manfred Knopf, a patient in New Jersey who received prescriptions he did not need or want, recognized that Medicare was billed for the products. AgeVital solicited Mr. Knopf to purchase the expensive compounded pharmaceuticals after he suffered a slip and fall accident that required treatment for his injuries.

Despite never agreeing to receive these medications, AgeVital began sending containers of expensive compounding creams to his doorstep. The healthcare prescriber listed on the packages delivered was Dr. Jean Wilson, a provider Knopf had never heard of or been treated by. Medicare paid approximately $37,377 for these medically unnecessary compounded pharmaceuticals sent to Knopf. After recognizing what he believed was fraud, Knopf decided to report his concerns to the government.

With the assistance of attorney David Williams of Kline & Specter, P.C. (along with Jesse Hoyer and Elaine Stromgren of James Hoyer, P.A.), the lawsuit was filed under the qui tam or whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act. The Act allows private citizens who suspect

fraud against the government to bring a lawsuit on behalf of the United States for false claims and to share in any recovery. 

“The False Claims Act gives us a powerful tool with which to expose fraud and recover money on behalf of taxpayers. We thank Mr. Knopf for recognizing the fraud and having the courage to bring it to the Government’s attention,” said attorney Hoyer.

Anti-Kickback Statute

The Anti-Kickback Statute prohibits the knowing and willful payment of compensation to induce the referral of services or items that are paid for by a federal health care program. Individuals and entities can be subject to liability under the False Claims Act for submitting claims to federal health care programs in violation of the Anti-Kickback Statute.

“Kickback schemes undermine public trust in our health care system and lead to unnecessary health care costs at taxpayers’ expense,” said Assistant Attorney General Jody Hunt for the Department of Justice’s Civil Division.

“We will not tolerate those who profit at the expense of taxpayers by entering into illegal kickback arrangements,” says U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Florida Maria Chapa Lopez. “Our office is committed to holding individuals accountable for corporate malfeasance.”

Mr. Williams, Ms. Hoyer and Ms. Stromgren sincerely appreciate the efforts of the Civil Division’s Commercial Litigation Branch, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida, the FBI, the Defense Criminal Investigative Service and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General that contributed to the resolution of this case.

Kline & Specter P.C. is a nationwide personal injury and medical malpractice law firm with offices in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and New York.

James Hoyer, P.A. is a nationwide whistleblower and employment law firm with offices in Florida, Washington D.C., and Michigan.

 

What to do when work related issues threaten your job

When you’re facing issues at work, it can be scary and confusing. Wrongful termination. Discrimination. Retaliation. Witnessing fraud. James Hoyer Employment Lawyer Dave Scher explains what to do and how to get help.

Dave Scher leads the James Hoyer Employment law division. Click here to learn more about Dave and to contact him directly for a consultation.

 

Employment Lawyer Dave Scher explains how he helps clients

Attorney Dave Scher leads the James Hoyer Employment Law division. His philosophy stems from the simple belief that it’s a privilege to help people. Watch the video below to hear from Dave personally on why he practices employment law and how he helps his clients.

Click here to learn more about Dave and to contact him directly for a consultation.

 

Deputy Associate AG Talks False Claims Act

Yesterday, Deputy Associate Attorney General Stephen Cox delivered remarks on the False Claims Act and qui tam enforcement by the Department of Justice. 

His speech touched on five major topics:

  1. Fraud on the Taxpayer
  2. Qui Tam Dismissals
  3. Subregulatory Guidance
  4. Piling On
  5. Cooperation Credit
Read More…
 

James Hoyer Attorney & Whistleblower Client Featured on American Greed Episode

James Hoyer Of Counsel Attorney David Haron and his client George Karadsheh were featured in an encore presentation of American Greed: Diagnosis Blood Money. Karadsheh blew the whistle to expose one of the most heinous medical fraud cases of our day.

Dr. Farid Fata told patients they had cancer when they did not in order to cash in on their chemo treatments. The doctor was convicted and sent to prison, and with the help of Attorney David Haron and his client, the government recovered $17 million dollars for the fraudulent billing of chemotherapy to Medicare. 

The case has been profiled by multiple media outlets around the world and on multiple programs like “American Greed” on CNBC and the CBS program “Whistleblowers.”

Click here to watch a preview of the American Greed episode and click here to watch the entire episode.


 

New Justice Manual Speaks to the Brand Memo’s Impact on False Claims Act Cases

New provisions of the Justice Manual that were circulated by the Deputy Attorney General recently provide new insight on how the Department of Justice will implement the Brand Memo in False Claims Act cases.  The Brand Memo was issued on January 25, 2018 and quickly spread through the whistleblower legal community as it seemed to limit the use of agency guidance documents in affirmative civil enforcement cases.  Since its release, the memo has been repeatedly cited by defendants who claimed that violations of subregulatory guidance should not be considered in False Claims Act cases.

Read More…