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Consumer Fraud 1089 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.

False Claims Act Complaint Against DynCorp Over Iraq Billing Fraud Stands

whistleblower USA

Government contractor DynCorp International will have to face the bulk of allegations made in a False Claims Act lawsuit that accuses the company and a subcontractor of grossly and fraudulently overcharging the U.S. Department of State for security work performed in Iraq. While most False Act Claim lawsuits are filed by private parties under the Act’s whistleblower provisions, the complaint against DynCorp was initiated by the U.S government. Federal Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle in Washington D.C. trimmed some claims from the government’s $135 million complaint but allowed the bulk of them to move forward, Law360 reported. Judge Huvelle said May ... Read More

CFTC Adopts Stronger Whistleblower Rules and Protections

whistleblower USA

Anti-retaliation whistleblower protections are getting a new boost under the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), after the agency’s board unanimously approved amendments to current rules in an effort to make it less risky for would-be whistleblowers to call out fraud and other wrongdoing. Changes to the Commodity Exchange Act will now allow the CFTC and whistleblowers to bring an action against an employer in cases of alleged retaliation. The amendments also bar employers from using confidentiality, pre-dispute arbitration, or similar agreements to obstruct potential whistleblowers from communicating with CFTC staff about possible commodities laws violations, the agency said. In ... Read More

CVS/Omnicare Settle Whistleblower Lawsuit for $8 million

whistleblower reward justice

A lawsuit filed under the False Claims Act by a whistleblower who accused CVS subsidiary Omnicare of cheating Medicare and Medicaid through its prescription verification system has been resolved with an $8 million settlement, New Jersey U.S. Attorney William Fitzpatrick announced. The deal resolved civil claims that Omnicare, in an effort to increase business efficiency and profit, designed and implemented an automated label verification system that used improper drug codes, resulting in the submission of claims for generic drugs differently from those actually dispensed to Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries. The whistleblower complaint also alleged that the false, patient-specific information on ... Read More

Wells Fargo Scandal Far Worse Than First Estimated, Lawyers Say

Wells Fargo fraud

Wells Fargo bank may have opened as many as 3.5 million bogus customer checking, savings, and credit card accounts during the last 15 years, far more than previously believed, lawyers for a class of affected customers estimate. According to papers filed May 11 in federal court in San Francisco, plaintiffs’ lawyers say the number of accounts Wells Fargo opened without customers’ knowledge or consent is much higher than the bank and federal regulators originally estimated. For months that number stood at around 2.1 million. The fake accounts stretch back to 2002, an internal bank investigation found, and continued until about ... Read More

Jury Awards Whistleblower $1.5 Million in Retaliation Case

whistleblower retaliation

A former fire investigator for the Charlotte, North Carolina Fire Department was awarded $1.5 million by a jury who found the investigator had been fired in retaliation for voicing safety concerns about construction work on a fire department office building. The Charlotte Fire Department fired Crystal Eschert in 2014, claiming a controversial facebook comment she posted on her personal page was offensive and inflammatory and could have ignited trouble in Charlotte at a time when riots broke out in Ferguson, Missouri, over police slayings. Eschert’s facebook comment said: “White guy shot by police yesterday near Ferguson … Where is Obama? ... Read More

Kansas Chiropractor Pays $1 Million To Settle False Claims Act Suit

Pills - Stethoscope on Money

A Kansas City, Kansas, Chiropractor has agreed to pay the U.S. more than $1 million to settle False Claims Act allegations that he and his three clinics billed Medicare for several procedures that were not covered by the healthcare program or not medically necessary. According to U.S. Attorney Tom Beall’s office, chiropractor Brian Schnitta and Natural Way Chiropractic Center will pay the U.S. government $1, 038,903 to resolve the government’s allegations. Federal prosecutors say that Dr. Schnitta, who owns and operates clinics in Overland Park, Kansas; Lenexa, Kansas; and in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, claimed he and his clinics provided treatments ... Read More

Lawsuit questions effectiveness of weight loss supplement

bathroom scale, diet, weight

The Vitamin Shoppe Inc. is facing claims in California federal court from a proposed class of consumers who allege the company misled the public by promoting and selling weight loss supplements that contained ingredients that are virtually ineffective at suppressing appetite, according to Law360. Andrea Nathan, who filed the lawsuit, claims that Vitamin Shoppe’s garcinia cambogia extract was promoted to help manage weight and suppress appetite, but studies investigating the effectiveness of the dietary supplement failed to prove it was any more effective than a placebo. Nathan also cited individual studies on garcinia cambogia’s active ingredients, hydroxycitric acid (HCA) and ... Read More

Whistleblowers Ask 9th Circuit To Reinstate FCA Lawsuit Against Honeywell

whistleblower USA

Plaintiffs in a whistleblower lawsuit against military contractor Honeywell International have turned to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals a third time in an effort to have their False Claims Act complaint revived. The False Claims Act lawsuit seeks a $45 million recovery for the United States government, alleging that Honeywell falsely inflated its energy savings calculations for work performed under an Army contract. Honeywell’s contract stipulated that the company was not eligible for payment if the energy cost savings on an Alabama-based Army Engineering and Support Center was not shown to reduce actual energy costs. The project involved converting ... Read More

False Claims Act lawsuit settles For $1 Million

Pills - Stethoscope on Money

A False Claims Act lawsuit filed brought by the U.S. government against a Dodge City, Kansas, penis pump manufacturer ended this week with a $1 million settlement. According to United States Attorney Tom Beall, District of Kansas, Pos-T-Vac, Inc. agreed to pay the U.S. to settle allegations that it violated the federal False Claims Act by improperly charging Medicare for “vacuum products used to treat erectile dysfunction.” Prosecutors alleged that from Jan. 1, 2009, through July 27, 2012, Pos-T-Vac submitted claims for durable medical supplies that were not medically necessary, lacked documentation of medical necessity, or were not properly ordered ... Read More

Whistleblower Sues U.S. For Ignoring Oil Rig Chemical Dumping Evidence

Oil Rig, daylight

A whistleblower who allegedly witnessed environmental crimes being committed aboard an oil drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico is suing the Unites States, claiming a federal prosecutor ignored his evidence and cost the government $28 million in fines. According to Courthouse News Service, Evan Howington filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court May 4, disputing assistant U.S. attorney Jon Maestri’s conclusion that the Uncle John oil rig, anchored by an oil well about 60 miles off the Louisiana coast, did not fit the definition of a ship under the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships. Mr. Howington, an Eagle ... Read More