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Consumer Fraud 1318 articles

Investment and securities fraud is one area of consumer fraud litigation pursued by the attorneys at Beasley Allen. Litigation includes individual cases as well as class actions that have been filed throughout the country. Cases in this area also involve matters including wrongful conduct of insurance and finance companies including fraud and bad faith, mortgage loan fraud, general consumer fraud and employment issues. Pending cases include securities and investment fraud litigation against companies including Stanford Securities and Regions Morgan Keegan, among others.

Our firm also is representing people who have been taken advantage of in the workplace, through violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). In these cases, employers intentionally misclassify employees as independent contractors or managers in order to reduce costs such as overtime compensation, employee benefits, payroll taxes, unemployment compensation and workers compensation.

Oklahoma Ambulance Provider Settles Whistleblower Kickback Allegations

An Oklahoma ambulance service provider will pay $300,000 to settle a whistleblower lawsuit alleging it violated the federal False Claims Act and Anti-Kickback Statute by engaging in an unlawful kickback scheme with a former Texas contractor. According to Tulsa World, a whistleblower lawsuit provided the basis for allegations lodged by federal officials. The complaint alleged that Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA), its former president and CEO Stephen Williamson, and contractor Paramedics Plus LLC controlled a slush fund that they used to pay out more than $20 million in kickbacks, including $50,000 or more for Mr. Williamson’s personal benefit. The State ... Read More

Whistleblower Helps Medicare Recover $9.68 Million From Oxygen Supplier

Federal officials praised a whistleblower whose False Claims Act lawsuit against a Florida-based medical equipment supplier recovered $9.68 million for Medicare. U.S. Attorney Joseph Brown of the Eastern District of Texas said its multi-million-dollar settlement agreement with Rotech Healthcare Inc., a supplier of respiratory equipment and portable oxygen, resolves allegations that Rotech knowingly billed Medicare for portable oxygen supplies it provided to Medicare beneficiaries who didn’t need or use them. Rotech also admitted that it billed Medicare for oxygen supplies regardless of whether the supplies were delivered to beneficiaries. Medicare covers rentals of portable and stationary oxygen equipment for up ... Read More

Georgia Whistleblower Exposes $3.2 Million Kickback Scheme

A whistleblower who sued a group of Atlanta-area orthopedic and anesthesia providers for their alleged participation in an illegal kickback scheme has helped the U.S. government recover $3.2 million for Medicare. According to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the whistleblower lawsuit led to a settlement agreement between the federal government and Georgia Bone & Joint; Summit Orthopaedic Surgery Center; Southern Crescent Anesthesiology; and Sentry Anesthesia Management, as well as nurse anesthetist David LaGuardia. The whistleblower complaint, brought by Sharon Kopko, former Practice Administrator for Georgia Bone & Joint, alleged that Mr. LaGuardia, Sentry, and Southern Crescent provided a free ... Read More

Wells Fargo Whistleblower Allegedly Fired For Reporting Foreign Exchange Violations

Wells Fargo Bank finds itself facing another whistleblower lawsuit, this time filed by the former head of the bank’s foreign exchange (FX) group who says the bank encouraged employees to “make false and misleading representations to customers, to engage in abusive sales practices, and to enrich themselves at the expense of clients.” According to The Mercury News, whistleblower Simon Fowles alleges he voiced complaints about the unlawful and unethical practices to managers at the San Francisco-based banking giant for years but that his concerns essentially fell on deaf ears. Mr. Fowles claims he warned high-level Wells Fargo executives about “significant ... Read More

Whistleblower Sues Arizona Cancer Center For Alleged Medicare Fraud

A whistleblower complaint alleging an Arizona cancer treatment company cheated Medicare and other federal health care programs out of millions of dollars is moving ahead after a federal judge rejected the defendant’s motion to dismiss the case. The Republic/Arizona Central reports that the whistleblower suit alleges the Arizona Center for Cancer Care and its principals engaged in schemes to double-bill the government, overcharge for testing and treatments, and bill for medical services that patients didn’t need. The lawsuit claims these practices helped AZCCC improperly collect more than $8 million since 2011. Based in the Phoenix metro area, AZCCC operates 35 ... Read More

Whistleblower Helps U.S. Recover $11.5 Million From Radiation Therapy Chain

A whistleblower who sued Sightline Health LLC, a Texas-based chain of radiation therapy centers, alleging the company assembled and operated an illegal kickback scheme has helped the U.S. government recover about $11.5 million. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced it reached an agreement with SightLine and Integrated Oncology Network Holdings LLC, which acquired SightLine in 2011, to settle the whistleblower’s allegations that SightLine was engaging in an improper kickback scheme designed to boost its Medicare reimbursements. The whistleblower sued SightLine on behalf of the U.S. government under the False Claims Act. The DOJ investigated the whistleblower’s claims and chose ... Read More

Panera Bread Data Breach Exposed 37 Million Customer Accounts

Customers who have used Panera Bread’s online ordering system are advised to monitor their credit reports and banking accounts for suspicious activity after a data breach exposed the account information of at least 37 million consumers. According to KrebsOnSecurity, security lapses in Panera’s website had been leaking customer data for eight months before the company pulled it offline on Sunday, April 1, for several hours. The leaked data includes customer names, email addresses, birthdays, phone numbers, mailing addresses, and the last four digits of the customer’s credit card. Panera loyalty card numbers were also leaked. Because the cards are linked ... Read More

Securities class action filed on behalf of J&J investors

A class action lawsuit has been filed on behalf of Johnson & Johnson investors who purchased or otherwise acquired Johnson & Johnson securities between Feb. 22, 2013, and Feb. 7, 2018. The investors claim that the company made false or misleading statements or failed to disclose that it has known for decades that its talc-containing products like Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower contain asbestos fibers and that exposure to the products can cause ovarian cancer and mesothelioma. The Johnson & Johnson investors have until April 9, 2018, to file a lead plaintiff motion. The complaint references a Feb. ... Read More

Takata Whistleblowers Split $1.7 Million Award

Three whistleblowers who were instrumental in alerting U.S. authorities to the risks of Takata’s deadly airbag inflators will share an award of $1.7 million, a sum that could grow substantially larger once legislators determine the mechanics of a new auto whistleblower law passed in 2015. The whistleblowers were all former employees of Takata Corp., the Japan-based automotive supplier that manufactured tens of millions of airbags with highly unstable inflators. The dangerously defective airbags were installed in cars, trucks, and SUVs made by 19 automakers Lawyers for the three whistleblowers said the men provided extensive assistance and information that prompted the ... Read More

Kmart Settles Whistleblower’s Medicaid Fraud Suit

Kmart Corporation has agreed to pay $525,000 to settle a whistleblower lawsuit alleging the retailer’s California pharmacies improperly billed Medi-Cal, the state of California’s Medicaid program, which provides health care to millions of low-income and disabled Californians. Kmart operates pharmacies at some of its retail locations in several states, including about a half-dozen locations in California. According to allegations contained in the whistleblower suit, Kmart’s California pharmacies violated the federal False Claims Act by billing the Medicaid program for certain drugs that were not supported by diagnosis and documentation requirements. Medi-Cal rules include a formulary list of “Code 1” drugs, ... Read More