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Congress gives distressed homeowners Christmas gift


reuters.com | December 23, 2014

By Ray Hagar

In the last fiscal year, the federal government recovered a record $5.69 billion under the False Claims Act, which means the payouts to the whistleblowers, who play a crucial role in exposing cases of fraud, have been some of the biggest ever.

Whistleblowers who file false claims lawsuits can receive up to 30 percent of the money that a company pays to the government, which added up to $435 million in whistleblower rewards primarily for mortgage, health care and defense fraud cases.

Here’s a round up of some of the biggest false claims settlements and the subsequent whistleblower rewards from the last fiscal year:

Johnson & Johnson
Settlement: $2.2 billion “to resolve criminal and civil liability arising from allegations relating to the prescription drugs Risperdal, Invega and Natrecor, including promotion for uses not approved as safe and effective by the Food and Drug Administration and payment of kickbacks to physicians and to the nation’s largest long-term care pharmacy provider.” It’s one of the largest health care fraud settlements in U.S. history, according to the Department of Justice.

Whistleblower’s share: $167.7 million divided among whistleblowers in Pennsylvania ($112 million), Massachusetts ($27.7 million) and California ($28 million).

JP Morgan Chase

Settlement: $614 million “for violating the False Claims Act by knowingly originating and underwriting non-compliant mortgage loans submitted for insurance coverage and guarantees by the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Federal Housing Administration and the Department of Veterans Affairs,” according to the Department of Justice.

Whistleblower’s share: $63.9 million will go to Keith Edwards, a former assistant vice president supervising a government insuring unit for JP Morgan, for providing tips that led to the company’s agreement to pay $614 million.

Bank of America

Settlement: $16.65 billion – the largest civil settlement with a single entity in American history — “related to the packaging, marketing, sale, arrangement, structuring and issuance of RMBS, collateralized debt obligations, and the bank’s practices concerning the underwriting and origination of mortgage loans.”

Whistleblower’s share: Former Countrywide Financial executive Edward O’Donnell is collecting more than $57 million for helping federal prosecutors force Bank of America to pay $16.65 billion for its role in churning out shoddy mortgages and related securities before the financial crisis.

Amedisys Inc.

Settlement: $150 million “to the federal government to resolve allegations that from 2008 to 2010 they billed Medicare for nursing and therapy services that were medically unnecessary or provided to patients who were not homebound, and otherwise misrepresented patients’ conditions to increase payments,” according to the Department of Justice.

Whistleblowers’ share: $26 million split collectively among former Amedisys employees.

Omnicare Inc.

Settlement: $124.4 million “for allegedly offering improper financial incentives to nursing facilities in return for their continued patronage of Omnicare to supply drugs to elderly Medicare and Medicaid patients.“

Whistleblowers share: $17.24 million will be awarded to Donald Gale, a former Omnicare employee.


Back to December 2014 Archive

CFLA was founded by the Nation's Leading Foreclosure Defense Attorneys back in 2007 to serve the Foreclosure Defense Industry and fight pervasive Bank Fraud. Since opening our virtual doors, CFLA has rapidly expanded to become the premier online legal destination for small businesses and consumers. But as the company continues to grow, we're careful to hold true to our original vision. For us, putting the law within reach of millions of people is more than just a novel idea—it's the founding principle, just ask Andrew P. Lehman, J.D.. With convenient locations in Houston and Los Angeles, you can contact Our National Account Specialist and General Manager / Member Damion W. Emholtz at 888-758-2352 for a free Mortgage Fraud Analysis or to obtain samples of work product, including cutting edge Bloomberg Securitization Audits, Litigation Support, Quiet Title Packages, and for more information about our Nationally Accredited and U.S. Department of Education Approved "Mortgage Securitization Analyst Training Certification" Classes (3 days) 24 hours for approved CLE & MCLE Credit (Now Available Online).

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