More than $3.7 Billion in Taxpayer Funds Recouped from Fraudsters in 2017 Alone
– U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley’s False Claims Act reforms helped the federal government recover more than $3.7 billion from fraudsters in fiscal year 2017, according to a Justice Department announcement
yesterday. That brings the total amount of taxpayer dollars recovered from fraud since Grassley’s reforms to more than $56.1 billion
“Over and over again the False Claims Act has proven to be the single most effective tool for recovering taxpayer dollars lost to fraudsters who exploit the government. It encourages whistleblowers to raise the alarm when they encounter unscrupulous crooks and prevents further government waste. And it clearly works. To those who doubt the value of whistleblowers and the False Claims Act, I’d just say: $56 billion and counting,” Grassley said. “Yesterday’s announcement marks yet another significant milestone in our efforts to protect taxpayers against fraud.”
The False Claims Act was enacted to prosecute fraud against taxpayers by unscrupulous companies and government contractors. Grassley, the current Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, authored reforms to the False Claims Act in 1986 to encourage whistleblowers to come forward with information involving such fraud. In the last decade, the government has clawed back an average of nearly $3.6 billion annually, thanks in large part to Grassley’s qui tam provisions, which allow whistleblowers to share in the government’s recovery. Of the more than $3.7 billion recovered in the last fiscal year, over $3.4 billion are related to law suits filed under the qui tam provisions. Many of the recoveries were initiated by whistleblowers who took advantage of Grassley’s provisions allowing them to bring their own case on the government’s behalf.
Grassley also led an effort in 2009 to pass the Fraud Enforcement Recovery Act
, which bolstered existing tools and resources for government investigators and prosecutors to combat fraud.