Search Site
Menu

Merit Medical Systems Agrees to Pay $18 Million to Resolve False Claims Act Violations

Merit Medical Systems recently agreed to pay $18 million to resolve claims that it violated the Anti-Kickback Statute and the False Claims Act in paying physicians and healthcare facilities to use their products.

As part of the settlement, the organization does not admit any wrongdoing, but will pay out the money that will be split between the federal government, individual states and Dr. Charles Wolf, the whistleblower.

Case background

Dr. Wolf served as Chief Compliance Officer for MMSI until October 2015. Six months after leaving his position, he filed a whistleblower complaint against the organization, alleging it made false claims to the Food and Drug Administration and other agencies, and engaged in false or misleading marketing of certain products, all while routinely violating the federal anti-kickback statute.

Wolf claimed MMSI made payments to healthcare providers to the tune of millions of dollars in free advertising assistance, practice support and development and “educational” grants in exchange for the healthcare providers purchasing and using its products. Publicly, MMSI claimed this financial assistance was intended to increase awareness of its treatments, but MMSI only provided this assistance to certain healthcare providers as a means of rewarding them for past sales, taking business away from MMSI’s competitors and encouraging future sales.

The complaint also includes allegations that MMSI management frequently spoke about compliance, and created a numeric system to determine the risk level of certain proposals and their potential ethical implications.

Healthcare fraud costs the United States billions of dollars every year. If you have any information about fraudulent activity perpetrated by your healthcare facility, contact an experienced whistleblower lawyer at Kardell Law Group to learn more about the steps you can take to report it.

Honors
Our Office
  • Dallas Office
    4514 Cole Ave
    #600
    Dallas, Texas 75205
    Phone: 214-306-8045
    Fax: 469-729-9926
Testimonials
  • "Steve Kardell was terrific in representing me in some very adversarial discussions with Citigroup and also later represented me in my testimony before the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission."  -Richard Bowen, Citigroup Whistleblower

  • "Incredible knowledge of employee related concerns and equally brilliant knowledge of health care regulations, standards of practice. I would recommend this firm to anyone."  -V.B.

  • "Reaching out to Steve Kardell was the best decision I made. His ability to provide immediate insight and direction was very powerful, and a huge relief during a very stressful time period. For anyone struggling with a whistleblower situation, I would highly recommend at least speaking with Steve. After a 10 minute call with him, I had a better understanding of what I was dealing with. Even better, he gave me some immediate hope. In the end Steve did a better job than I thought was possible. Steve was able to get in contact with people in my organization, that I didn’t have access to. Because of his years of experience, he already has contacts in many organizations in Dallas. The entire situation was handled peacefully. I was impressed by his ability to “keep the peace”–rather than creating a battle with the organization. The reason I didn’t reach out to a lawyer initially, was because I thought it would mean an immediate end to any hope of a positive relationship with the company. Steve was able to address my concerns, and in the end I was able to continue to work for them."  -KS

  • "Never thought my career would end like it did after 30 years of service. I was part of the first round of the so called reduction of force. I asked myself how can I be part of this with 30 years of seniority. How did they pick these 90 plus employees? Now, the culture of this organization made you question every decision they made. It wasn’t what you knew it’s was a culture of who you know. Nonetheless, I did not accept their severance package. I immediately starting looking for an attorney who would take on my case. After the initial call to Steve I had hope again. He was open and honest about everything and reassured me he would do his best for me, and he did. I had an awesome outcome. Thanks Steve you’re the best."  -S.S.

FOLLOW US
Facebook Twitter Linkedin RSS Feed JD Supra