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Case Detail


Universal Health Services, Inc. v. U.S. ex rel. Escobar
On June 16, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision that is likely to rein in efforts by the plaintiffs’ bar to use the federal False Claims Act (FCA) as a means of extorting funds from the business community. The decision was a partial victory for WLF, which filed a brief arguing that Congress adopted the FCA to fight outright fraud by government contractors, not to permit self-proclaimed whistleblowers to seek bounties for alleged breaches of contract. The Court held that plaintiffs may, under limited circumstances, base an FCA claim on allegations that a government contractor’s “false claim” was “implied” even though never expressly stated. But in a victory for WLF, the Court tightened the requirement that the plaintiff show that the alleged falsity was “material” to the government’s decision to pay the claim. It is not sufficient, the Court held, merely to show that the contractor sought payment despite having breached an important contractual provision.
Case Status:
Partial victory
More Information and Downloads:
1/27/2016: Download the Brief


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