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CFTC Announces Multiple Whistleblower Awards Totaling More than $45 Million

CFTC

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced multiple whistleblower awards totaling more than $45 million.  The awards demonstrate the growing success of the CFTC’s Whistleblower Program, in particular, the increasing volume and complexity of incoming whistleblower submissions. Section 748 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 created the CFTC’s Whistleblower Program.  Whistleblowers are eligible to receive between 10 and 30 percent of the monetary sanctions collected.  The CFTC can pay awards not only on CFTC enforcement actions but also related actions brought by foreign futures authorities if certain conditions are met. The CEA provides confidentiality protections for all whistleblowers.  Regardless of whether the CFTC grants an award, the CFTC will not disclose any information which could reasonably be expected to reveal a whistleblower’s identity, except in limited circumstances such as when disclosure is required in connection with a public proceeding.  Consistent with this confidentiality requirement, the more »

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Puerto Rico Tackles Medicaid Fraud with the Passing of its own False Claims Act

The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico recently announced the enactment of House Bill 1627, simultaneously enacting a Puerto Rican False Claims Act and authorizing the establishment of a Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. The new law allows whistleblowers to report any fraudulent act against the Puerto Rican government.  

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CFTC Announces First Whistleblower Award to a Foreign Whistleblower

CFTC

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) recently announced a whistleblower award of more than $70,000 to a foreign whistleblower, a first of its kind award for a foreign individual who significantly contributed to an ongoing CFTC investigation that led the CFTC to a successful settlement. It’s the sixth award to a whistleblower who provided valuable information about violations of the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA).

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CFTC Announces Its Largest Ever Whistleblower Award of Approximately $30 Million

CFTC

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced its largest-ever whistleblower award of approximately $30 million today.  The CFTC wrote that the whistleblower “voluntarily provided key original information that led to a successful enforcement action.”  

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Department of Justice Settles Two Large Lawsuits Alleging Healthcare Fraud

DOJ Whistleblower Attorneys

The Department of Justice recently settled two cases involving alleged violations of the False Claims Act by healthcare providers. The Department of Justice issued a press release on June 25th stating that Caris Healthcare, L.P. and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Caris Healthcare, LLC, a for-profit hospice chain that operates in Tennessee, Virginia, and South Carolina, have agreed to resolve allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by knowingly submitting false claims, and knowingly retaining overpayments, for the care of patients who were ineligible for the Medicare hospice benefit because they were not terminally ill. The Justice Department also announced on June 20th that Healogics Inc., a Jacksonville-based company that manages hundreds of hospital-based wound care centers across the country, agreed to settle allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by knowingly causing wound care centers to bill Medicare for medically unnecessary and unreasonable hyperbaric oxygen (“HBO”) therapy. Caris Settlement more »

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SEC Proposes Whistleblower Rule Amendments

SEC Whistleblower Award

The SEC voted today to propose amendments to its SEC Whistleblower Program rules.  The SEC Whistleblower Program was established in 2010 and provides that if an individual presents the SEC with original information concerning a violation of federal securities laws leading to an enforcement action that results in over $1 million in monetary sanctions, that individual is eligible to receive an award of 10% to 30% of the amount collected.

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For-Profit Law Schools Sue ABA In Response to Non-Compliance Findings

For-Profit Law Schools Sue ABA In Response to Findings of Non-Compliance with Regulatory Admissions Standards The American Bar Association (“ABA”), the regulatory body that oversees law school accreditation across the country, has recently been sued by the Florida Coastal School of Law, the now-defunct Charlotte School of Law, and most recently Arizona Summit Law School. All three for-profit law schools are owned by InfiLaw System LLC, a for-profit consortium of three independent law schools created in 2004 by Sterling Partners, a Chicago-based private-equity firm, and each of the schools operate as for-profit enterprises. This blog post discusses the ABA’s recent actions that form the basis of the lawsuits, as well as some of the circumstances that may have led to those actions by for-profit law schools that are often the target of whistleblower actions under the False Claims Act. Continually Lower Bar Passage Rates and ABA Inaction Since 2014, Bar more »

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Acting Associate Attorney General remarks on the False Claims Act

At a recent ABA conference on the Civil False Claims Act and Qui Tam Enforcement, the Acting Associate Attorney General, Jesse Panuccio, delivered remarks touching on a wide range of qui tam issues and Department of Justice policies including the Department’s enforcement priorities, dismissal discretion, view on sub-regulatory guidance, and intra-agency cooperation among others. The Acting Associate Attorney General also touched on the need for the Senate to act on the nominations for Department positions and a heightened focus on compliance and self-disclosure. Though parts of the message were not great for whistleblowers such as the DOJ’s intent to apportion recoveries to other regulators and away from False Claims Act relators to avoid “piling on”, the overall message was encouraging as Mr. Panuccio emphasized the Department’s focus on protecting the government’s fisc. Here are the remarks in full: Thank you, Sara, for that kind introduction. Sara has been litigator and leader more »

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Mastermind in $24 Million Ed4Mil Military Tuition Scam Sentenced

The mastermind of a $24 million scheme to take advantage of veterans and active duty military will spend 5 years in jail after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud.  Ed4Mil President David Alvey was criminally charged after a whistleblower suit filed by  James Hoyer client Adam Boyce. Alvey conspired with former Assistant Dean of Caldwell College Lisa DiBisceglie and former Ed4Mil employee Helen Sechrist to trick members of the military into signing up for wildly overpriced online classes that were misrepresented as Caldwell classes. In reality, they were cheap certificate courses offered by an unaccredited school. DiBisceglie and Sechrist also plead guilty.  Click here to read more about Alvey’s sentencing. Boyce first came forward to the government after concerns that Army National Guard members were being subjected to a bait and switch for online certificate courses, that were marked up in cost by 6-times and more when sold more »

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From Whistleblower to Whistleblower Attorney

Attorney Clark Bolton Forges New Path at James Hoyer: As James Hoyer’s newest attorney, Clark Bolton, brings an extra level of pride to the firm. He took an unlikely path, from whistleblower to attorney representing other whistleblowers seeking justice.

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