A qui tam lawsuit is a type of civil suit filed by a private individual in the interest of the government. It is filed under the False Claims Act, which is a law that was established to provide compensation for those that took legal action in order to recover money for the government. Qui tam cases get their name from a Latin phrase that translates into “He who sues in this matter for the king as well as for himself,” and it is called that because when a person learns of wrongdoing against the government and files a qui tam lawsuit, they are eligible to receive compensation for themselves if the process is successful and the government recovers monies. Qui tam lawsuits are generally filed by employees or contractors who have inside information of wrongdoing. If you are in possession of information about fraud against the government and the American taxpayers and want to take action, call the attorneys at Bochetto & Lentz. We have an extensive record of success in preparing qui tam lawsuits and filing them on behalf of our clients.
Filing a qui tam lawsuit is not a process that should be undertaken without the assistance of an attorney. The preparation and filing of the qui tam claim is extremely specialized, and requires extensive legal knowledge and careful consideration. The filing must be submitted under seal so that nobody but the “relator” and the government is aware of it, and it is kept secret in order to give the government time to investigate the charges. Though this period of secrecy is supposed to be kept to just sixty days, the courts often extend the seal in order to provide enough time for thorough investigation, as the government needs to determine whether they are going to intervene in the case. If they do choose to get involved then they will pursue the lawsuit; if they elect not to then the person who filed the lawsuit is able to proceed on their own, on behalf of the government.
Compensation for a successful qui tam lawsuit depends upon many different factors. Much has to do with the strength of the case that is originally presented to the government and whether they elect to proceed or not. When the government pursues the case and recovers money from a company that has been defrauding them, the whistleblower who filed the qui tam lawsuit generally receives between 15 and 25 percent of the total recovery. When the government elects not to pursue the case and the relator proceeds on their own, the reward is between 25 and 30 percent of the money recovered for the government.
One of the most important elements of a qui tam lawsuit is to put together the evidence of wrongdoing in a compelling way that encourages the government to take the case on, and that is where having an experienced qui tam lawyer has the most value. If you believe that you have inside information about fraud against the government and want to file a qui tam lawsuit, call the Philadelphia law firm of Bochetto & Lentz today. We will review your information and help guide you through the process successfully.
Learn more about Qui Tam Lawsuits HERE.