On June 1, 2023, the Supreme Court held that the test for willfulness announced by the Supreme Court in Safeco does not apply in FCA actions. This decision was a setback for WLF, which filed an amicus brief supporting the respondents. WLF’s brief explained that violations of the FCA carry both punitive civil penalties and criminal liability. This means that defendants are entitled to heightened due-process protections. WLF contended that applying Safeco in FCA cases would provide the necessary due-process protections while advancing Congress’s goal of ensuring companies do not bury their heads in the sand.
Ed. Note: The Supreme Court granted petitions for certiorari in two cases and combined them for briefing and oral argument. WLF participated as amicus in both cases in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. A link to our litigation page for U.S. ex rel. Schutte v. SuperValu is here, and the link for the U.S. ex rel. Proctor v. Safeway page is here.