Department of Justice Wants to Double Health Care Fraud Litigation Budget in 2016

Three months ago, the United States Department of Justice announced that it had a record year for money made through recoveries under the False Claims Act. Recoveries in 2014 reached more than $5 billion, including $2.3 billion only from health care fraud defendants. This was due in large part to more than 700 whistleblower cases being filed last year, which also set a new record for the federal government.

Now, the government is taking the steps to further expand its ability to litigate against people charged with health care fraud. As a part of the budget proposal announcements made by President Obama on February 3, the Department of Justice requested further investments for litigation enforcement of $5.5 million for the 2016 fiscal year. This would mark an increase of $1 million to hire 15 additional positions that would help in the department’s health care fraud enforcement strategy.

The Department of Justice justified this request as being necessary in order to expand on the success that its health care fraud initiative has had so far. According to the DoJ, additional staff and funding is needed to be able to respond to the ever-growing number of whistleblower cases being filed. The current health care fraud enforcement budget is $1.2 million, which means the additional $1 million would nearly double the existing budget.

Because of the way the Affordable Care Act expanded the reach of the False Claims Act, we can expect to see whistleblower cases continue to increase in frequency, meaning these budget increases will probably continue as well. It is expected that this request will be met with bipartisan support, as the federal government continues its focus on cracking down on fraudsters.

If you require strong legal representation associated with fraud litigation, meet with an experienced New Jersey health care litigation attorney at Buttaci Leardi & Werner, LLC.

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  • Posted on: May 12 2015