A False Claims Act lawsuit that took an unusual twist when the opposing parties became unlikely allies seeking discovery from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) presents an approach that may become more common in FCA litigation, McGuireWoods’ Timothy Fry and Brett Barnett wrote in Thomson Reuters Westlaw.
In the July 3, 2023, article, “Temporary allies: Opposing parties successfully sue VA for FCA-related discovery,” Fry and Barnett analyzed a Kansas case in which the relator in a qui tam action filed a lawsuit seeking to compel the VA to produce certain documents after the VA denied its discovery request. The defendant in the qui tam action intervened, also seeking to compel discovery. A federal judge ordered the VA to reconsider its decision.
“As FCA parties continue to request more documentation from agencies, separate actions seeking court orders to compel discovery may also grow,” the attorneys wrote. “As such, we may see more adversaries turned co-plaintiffs seeking information from reluctant government agencies in the near future, potentially with similar results.”
Fry and Barnett are Chicago partners in the firm’s Healthcare Department. Their analysis was originally published on The FCA Insider, McGuireWoods’ blog covering False Claims Act litigation issues.