James Hoyer Partner Jillian Estes joined other experts in qui tam litigation for a discussion of whistleblower cases against Big Pharma, at the 16th Pharmaceutical Compliance Congress and Best Practices Forum.
This summer, James Hoyer client Peggy Ryan was awarded close to the maximum percentage that a whistleblower can receive in a False Claims Act case against Endo Pharmaceuticals. Ryan is a former sales rep for Endo and blew the whistle on the company for off-label sales of its Lidoderm pain patch. Her award was a 24-percent share of the federal government’s civil settlement with Endo, amounting to a $33.6 million reward.
The Endo case was among the cases discussed by Estes at the Pharma Congress held in Washington D.C., the week of October 21st. Her panel also discussed what a whistleblower law firm looks for when vetting a case– including what attributes make a person the strongest relator. Other topics included: what factors are considered when deciding to proceed with a case if the government declines to intervene and a shift in the government’s focus from holding companies accountable to holding individuals accountable for their conduct.
The annual conference brings together top drug companies, regulators and watch dogs to discuss and improve best practices for compliance. It featured presentations by leading government regulators, company compliance professionals, in-house counsel, prominent industry consultants, and whistleblower attorneys, like Estes.
Pharma Congress is sponsored by the Pharmaceutical Compliance Forum, a coalition of industry compliance professionals and legal counsel from more than 50 of the largest research based drug companies.