False Claims Act/Qui Tam Defense

Leaders

Stuart F. Delery Washington, D.C.
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Charles J. Stevens San Francisco
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Overview

There is perhaps no firm in the world with more experience – and as deep a bench – in defending False Claims Act (FCA) cases than Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher.  From U.S. Supreme Court victories, to appellate court wins, to complete success in district courts around the United States, to the most comprehensive, semi-annual legal analysis provided by a law firm regarding False Claims Act activity, Gibson Dunn believes it is the premier firm in FCA defense.  

As discussed in our various publications, all available on this site, the FCA is an extremely powerful tool available to both the Department of Justice (DOJ) and purported whistleblowers seeking to file lawsuits on the government's behalf and obtain a percentage of what they recover.  With its treble damages and per-claim forfeiture provisions, the FCA is a potent weapon.  Moreover, the consequences of being found liable in an FCA case can be catastrophic, resulting in suspension or debarment from government contracts or exclusion from participation in government programs.

The numbers underscore what a powerful tool the FCA has become.  In just the last two fiscal years, the United States – in cases either filed on its own or by whistleblowers – has recovered nearly $10 billion.  And these cases have permeated all sectors of the economy and all industries in which government funding plays any role, including: defense work; financial services; education; health care; life sciences; medical devices and pharmaceuticals; and technology companies.  Last year saw more than 700 new FCA lawsuits filed by whistleblowers for the second year in a row, nearly doubling the annual number from just five years earlier and demonstrating the continuing increase in FCA litigation as plaintiffs' lawyers become more interested in initiating such cases. 

Gibson Dunn has experience in all phases of FCA litigation.  From conducting internal investigations once a company becomes aware of a potential FCA suit, to the extremely important meeting with the government to convince it not to file a suit or become involved in one filed by a whistleblower, to winning cases early on at the pleading stage, to engaging in discovery and trying cases, Gibson Dunn has done it all when it comes to the FCA.

Further, our team includes former civil and criminal prosecutors who investigated and prosecuted FCA matters for the government.  We have strong working relationships with the career DOJ lawyers responsible for FCA matters as a result of our substantial experience with them.  As a consequence, we have had considerable success representing clients during FCA investigations.  We frequently convince the DOJ not to intervene in whistleblower actions, not to separately file or pursue FCA actions, or to settle on favorable terms rather than litigate.