Detailed evidence is a very important component in any qui tam case, even if the qui tam relator did not witness the fraud first-hand. Documentary evidence—such as financial records, emails, or memorandums—is often used in this type of litigation.
Some whistleblowers use a personal recording device to obtain evidence at meetings or conferences, or they record phone conversations. Please note, however, that each state may have different laws about whether this type of evidence is admissible in court. Consult with your attorney before taking any recordings without the knowledge of your employer. If the government gets involved with the case, it may obtain company documents through subpoena and ask the whistleblower for help deciphering the evidence.
Though the nature of the evidence will vary based on the industry, it must demonstrate:
- The fraudulent party’s intent to defraud the government.
- The extent and financial impact of the fraud.
If you are still working on collecting evidence to support your claim, try to obtain evidence that answers the following questions:
- Who is perpetrating the fraud and who else knew/knows about it?
- What violation is taking place?
- When and where did the violation occur?
- How was/is the fraud perpetrated?
- Is the fraud ongoing?
- What are the implications of the fraud for the government/the public?
- How much money has been defrauded from the government?
For healthcare employees, it’s important to note that HIPAA contains certain exemptions for whistleblowers.
Potential whistleblowers looking to procure evidence of fraud can speak with our lawyers to learn more about what to do. Our attorneys can answer any questions or concerns you may have, so don’t hesitate to contact us today.