Whistleblower – Qui Tam – False Claims Act

Waddell & Magan, a Bozeman, Montana–based law firm will handle “whistleblower” or “qui tam” cases under the federal False Claims Act nationwide.

You are currently in the section of our website focusing on whistleblower – qui tam cases. For information on our other practice areas, take a look at our business litigation, insurance and personal injury sections.

What is a Qui Tam case?

A “Qui Tam” or “Whistleblower” case is an action under the False Claims Act (also referred to as the FCA). Created during the Civil War to stop dishonest suppliers to the Union Army and Navy, the Act has also been called the “Lincoln Law” and the “Informer’s Act.” “Qui Tam” is actually a shortened version of the Latin “ qui tam pro domino rege quam pro se ipson in hac parte sequitur.” That means “who pursues this action on our Lord the King’s behalf as well as his own.”

What kinds of activities fall under the False Claims Act?

The most common types of qui tam cases today are fraud cases involving Medicare, Medicaid, construction contracts, government contractors and the defense industry. Certain claims are barred, such as claims of tax fraud, allegations that have already been publicly disclosed or are based on prior whistleblower lawsuits, and actions against members of Congress, the judiciary, armed forces members, and senior members of the executive branch.

What is the statute of limitations for Qui Tam cases?

Generally speaking, you can bring a False Claims Act case no more than six years after the date the false claim is made or up to three years after the date on when facts material to the “right of action” are known, or reasonably should have been known by the U.S. official charged with the responsibility to act in the circumstances, whichever is later. But in no event can a case be brought later than ten years from the date of the violation.

What will I be awarded if I win?

The government may recover its actual damages, trebled, and civil penalties up to $5,000 and $11,000 for each false claim. You, as the relator, can recover as much as 30% of that total.

Don’t shoot yourself in the foot!  

The False Claims Act requires that the lawsuit be under seal. Until the investigation is over, you cannot discuss the case with anyone, including friends or family members. And the investigation is not over until the government completes its investigation.

Will I owe anything to Waddell & Magan if I lose?

No. If your false claims case is unsuccessful, you will not be responsible for any of the costs incurred.  

How does Waddell & Magan get paid?

Our contingent fee is based on a percentage of the total amount of benefits recovered on your behalf.

How long will it take to resolve my case?

The length of a qui tam case varies dramatically. Most lawsuits revolve around the trial date set by the court. And that is up to the court administrators and the workload the court is handling. In whistleblower cases, there are the additional delays due to the investigative process of the government.

What if the case is outside of Bozeman?

Although Waddell & Magan is located in Bozeman, Montana, our attorneys practice throughout the state and are licensed in other states.

My case isn’t in Montana. Can you still represent me?

Yes. The attorneys at Waddell & Magan are licensed in Montana, Texas and Pennsylvania. If you live outside of these states, we will bring in local counsel to work in association with us on your case.

There is no charge for an initial consultation.