Whistleblower and False Claims Act Litigation
NP has a robust department of lawyers and staff dedicated to prosecuting whistleblower and False Claim Act (“FCA”) litigation on behalf of the United States and state governments. The FCA allows private citizens to blow the whistle on companies and individuals who commit fraud on the government for financial gain. This kind of litigation is often referred to as “qui tam” litigation.
To encourage whistleblowers (known as “relators” under the FCA) to step forward, the federal government rewards relators with a percentage of the funds that are recovered from successful litigation. Other federal agencies, including the SEC and the IRS, have established programs to reward whistleblowers who provide information leading to successful enforcement actions involving financial fraud, such as insider trading, tax evasion, accounting fraud, market manipulation, and violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. NP possesses the experience and skills to advise and represent relators as they decide whether to blow the whistle and initiate litigation.
We have represented relators in FCA litigation involving a number of varying industries, including healthcare, finance, banking, insurance, oil and gas, accounting, and other industries, in cases across the United States. Our experience in these cases, and our history of working with the government to achieve success, has made NP a first choice in whistleblower and FCA litigation around the country.
Initiating FCA litigation is a difficult and time-consuming process that requires an in-depth front-end investigation—often with the help of private investigators and other experts—to determine whether and to what extend the alleged fraud is occurring. NP will advance all costs of investigating, preparing, filing, and prosecuting FCA cases on behalf of relators, and will work diligently alongside relators to fashion the most accurate and compelling case possible. In addition, NP’s FCA department has established relationships with skilled investigators, economists, statisticians, accountants, auditors, and other industry-specific experts to assist in compiling the information and evidence necessary for a successful FCA case. And, because NP represents relators on a contingent basis, relators will not have to pay any attorneys’ fees unless the case is successful.
The FCA also contains anti-retaliation provisions to protect whistleblowers from any retaliation by their current or former employers as a result of filing or pursuing FCA litigation. While every relator should carefully consider whether he or she wants to initiate whistleblowing litigation—a decision that should only be made with the advice of capable attorneys—NP stands by its relator-clients to protect them from retaliatory or negative action by their current or former employers. In short, when it comes to blowing the whistle and initiating FCA litigation, NP is there for its clients from beginning to end.
For example, NP represented a whistleblower in multiple FCA cases alleging that major energy companies were underpaying federal oil and gas royalties. These cases resulted in a number of significant settlements for the Government. NP incurred more than $5 million in out-of-pocket expenses assisting the Government in one of these cases alone (Wright v. AGIP Petroleum Company et al.). While this is just one example of NP’s success in whistleblower litigation, it demonstrates our ability to dedicate substantial time and resources to achieve outstanding results.