Litigation & Dispute Resolution

BLOG: "Constructive Demotion" Claim Under Title VII Gains Traction in 4th Circuit District Courts

March 11, 2020
By Paul W. Mengel III
While the viability of a claim of "constructive demotion" under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) has yet to be determined by the Fourth Circuit, a series of cases in district courts within the Circuit suggest that such might not be the case for long. In one such recent case, Judge Conrad of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia denied a defendant truck driver training company's motion to dismiss a constructive demotion claim brought by a female instructor. Diana Salmons, the plaintiff in Salmons v. Commercial Driver Services, Inc., Case No. 7:19-cv-00532, claimed she was subjected to a pervasive pattern of sexual harassment at the hands of her male counterparts and, as a result, she brought a five-count complaint alleging sexual harassment, hostile work environment, discriminatory and retaliatory constructive demotion and constructive discharge, and sex-based wage discrimination, in violation of Title VII. Employers should be aware of the increased number of constructive demotion cases and the courts' rulings on these matters, as well as conduct regular sexual harassment training to prevent this sort of behavior from occurring in the workplace.
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BLOG: DOJ Inside Access Highlights 4 Things to Expect from the False Claims Act in 2020

February 25, 2020
By Camilla J. Hundley
Several weeks ago, my colleague Matt Feinberg highlighted "4 Issues That Defined the False Claims Act (FCA) in 2019" and made predictions about anticipated FCA trends for 2020. At the recent 2020 Advanced Forum on False Claims and Qui Tam Enforcement, Department of Justice (DOJ) Deputy Associate Attorney General Stephen Cox (AG Cox) offered inside access to DOJ's prospective priorities in enforcing and reforming the FCA for 2020. Below, we review the DOJ's resolutions, which allow us to better anticipate and understand issues government contractors may face under the FCA moving forward.
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BLOG: Teva Pharmaceuticals to Pay $54 Million to Settle Healthcare-Based FCA Claims

February 11, 2020
By Timothy F. Valley
A qui tam False Claims Act (FCA) action brought by two whistleblowers alleging violations of the Anti-Kickback Statute (AKS) has resulted in a $54-million settlement from Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. and two subsidiaries (Teva) in the case of United States ex rel. Arnstein and Senousy v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. Although it was alleged that the federal government and various state and local governments suffered damages as a result of Teva's actions, they declined to intervene in the case. Teva's settlement highlights whistleblower incentives to file costly FCA claims against government contractors.
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BLOG: 4 Issues That Defined the False Claims Act in 2019

January 28, 2020
By Matthew E. Feinberg
As I wrote two weeks ago, the Department of Justice (DOJ) recently released its annual fiscal year statistics on False Claims Act (FCA) and fraud matters. The report shows Fiscal Year 2019 was another big year for the FCA, as the number of new matters initiated and the amount of monetary recoveries obtained both increased over the previous year. 2019 also brought important FCA decisions from federal courts, including the Supreme Court; potential new avenues for FCA liability; and formal announcements from DOJ. These reveal emerging trends that may have lasting implications for government contractors.
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BLOG: The FCA Continues to Pay (For the Government): Key Takeaways from DOJ's FY 2019 Fraud Statistics

January 14, 2020
By Matthew E. Feinberg
On January 9, 2020, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that it recovered more than $3 billion in settlements and judgments from civil cases involving fraud and the False Claims Act (FCA) in Fiscal Year (FY) 2019, which ended September 30, 2019. Along with the announcement, the government issued its annual fraud statistics report for the fiscal year. The government's announcement and report confirmed trends in FCA litigation and other fraud cases that government contractors should look out for in 2020 and beyond.
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