Lack of materiality evidence "zaps" mammoth FCA jury awards: 5 Lessons

Two courts recently upended monstrous False Claims Act (FCA) jury awards — one for $663 million and the other for $347 million — concluding that liability was not sufficiently supported by evidence of materiality, based on the Supreme Court's guidance in Universal Health Services, Inc. v. U.S. ex rel. Escobar, 136 S. Ct. 1989, 2016 BL 192168 (2016). Decisions like these illustrate how significantly Escobar narrows the scope of FCA liability. For companies susceptible to potential whistleblower lawsuits, these decisions underscore touchstones in the new materiality analysis that could end an FCA claim.

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