• MWI Case Shows The False Claims Act Needs A Change
  • April 27, 2017 | Author: Robert T. Rhoad
  • Law Firm: Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP - Washington Office
  • Imagine your company becomes the subject of a U.S. Department of Justice investigation, which goes on for 30 months and ends with no grand jury indictment or criminal prosecution. Then, in a recalcitrant pivot, the DOJ decides to intervene in a complaint, previously filed under seal years earlier by a qui tam relator (colloquially referred to as “whistleblower”) under the federal civil False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. §§ 3729-3733, triggering the complaint to become unsealed and prompting active litigation. The company suddenly finds itself subjected to potential treble damages and penalties of nearly $225 million, even though the company was not (or ever) suspended or disbarred from government contracting.