District Court Vacates $350M Jury Verdict Under Escobar For Failure to Prove the Government Would Have Denied Payment

As discussed here and here, courts continue to grapple with how to resolve qui tam cases where the government continued purchasing from the defendant even after being made aware of the relator’s allegations of fraud.  One judge recently vacated an “unwarranted, unjustified, unconscionable, and probably unconstitutional” $350 million jury verdict for the relator, finding the government’s continued payment of the defendants’ claims dispositive on the issue of materiality.  United States ex rel. Ruckh v. Salus Rehabilitation LLC, No. 11-cv-1303 (M.D. Fla. Jan. 11, 2018).  The case reinforces the important role that government purchasing histories play post-Escobar.