DOJ Releases Detailed Statistics on FCA Recoveries Through FY 2012

Posted by Scott Stein and Nirav Shah

On December 4, 2012, Acting Associate Attorney General Tony West announced that the Justice Department’s Civil Division had recovered nearly $5 billion in settlements and judgments under the False Claims Act for fiscal year 2012. This represents yet another record recovery, surpassing the previous record by $1.7 billion. Subsequently, DOJ released more detailed statistics on FCA cases from 1986 through FY 2012, accessible here. A few observations on the recovery:

  • Over $3 billion in recoveries from cases involving healthcare fraud, breaking a previous healthcare fraud record set in fiscal year 2011. From January 2009 through the end of fiscal year 2012, the DOJ collected over $9.5 billion from healthcare fraud, setting another record over a four-year period.
  • $3.3 billion in actions filed by whistleblowers, arising from 647 separate qui tam suits.
  • Almost $1 billion ($911 million) consists of the FCA component of DOJ’s $25 billion mortgage settlement with five banks. The numbers indicate increased activity in this area in 2012, a trend that will likely continue into next year.
  • DOJ continues to intervene in roughly the same percentage of cases as in prior years, roughly 22%.
  • The number of new matters is roughly the same in 2011 and 2012. However, the DOJ recoveries are substantially higher in both the non-qui tam and qui tam-initiated categories.
  • The percentage of suits initiated by DOJ is substantially lower in healthcare fraud matters than in other kinds of qui tams. Only about 5% of FCA suits in the healthcare context are DOJ-initiated. Put differently, virtually all healthcare FCA cases are whistleblower-initiated
  • Comparing qui tam cases to settlements and judgments in non-qui tam cases, the non-qui tam cases result in a very high percentage of recoveries relative to their numbers. For example, in 2012, there was over $500 million recovered in non-qui tam cases, which have historically been a very low percent of total healthcare FCA cases.
  • DOJ settlements and judgments in intervened or DOJ-initiated cases hit an all-time high, exceeding last year’s record by nearly one billion dollars.
  • Recoveries in cases in which DOJ did not intervene hit a low-point compared to recoveries in recent years (only $29 million in 2012 compared to at least $100 million in each of the past two years).