Toxicology Testing Laboratory Pays Almost $12 Million To Settle Whistleblower Referral Kickback Allegations. Exposing Misconduct.

Toxicology Testing Laboratory Pays Almost $12 Million To Settle Whistleblower Referral Kickback Allegations

July 23, 2020

WASHINGTONJuly 23, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has entered into a settlement with Sterling Healthcare Opco, LLC d/b/a/Cordant Health Solutions (Cordant) to resolve a lawsuit that began five years ago with the filing of a whistleblower lawsuit by a former Cordant employee.  The whistleblower alleged that a testing laboratory owned by Cordant, and located in Tacoma, Washington, paid kickbacks to at least two major clients of the laboratory to induce those clients to refer tests to the laboratory.

Cordant agreed to pay the government $11,942,913 to settle the claims, originally filed by the whistleblower under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act. Under that law, a private citizen with knowledge of fraud against a government agency or government program can “blow the whistle” by bringing a lawsuit on behalf of the government. Successful qui tam whistleblowers can receive substantial awards. In this case, the government awarded the whistleblower 20% of the settlement amount, which is approximately $2.4 millionJonathan Tycko, Tycko & Zavareei LLP, based in Washington, D.C., and Felix Gavi LunaPeterson Wampold Rosato Feldman Luna, based in Seattle, Washington represented the whistleblower.

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