Have you or your home healthcare agency been accused of Medicare fraud? The government has taken an aggressive stance toward identifying and prosecuting suspected cases of Medicare fraud with the establishment of the Healthcare Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Team or “HEAT.”
Unfortunately, there are many cases where home healthcare professionals have been wrongly accused of Medicare fraud. These healthcare providers may be subject to investigations by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), and the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation Division (IRS-CI).
If you are a home healthcare provider who has been accused of wrong-doing, it’s vital that you trust your case to the experienced Medicare fraud defense lawyers with the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass. We will offer an aggressive defense, working hard to help you see a favorable case resolution.
Our Texas law firm has many decades of experience in the field; experience that has allowed us to refine our defense strategies. Our goal is to clear you of wrong-doing as we strive to bring about a favorable resolution for your case.
If you need help from a home healthcare Medicare fraud defense lawyer, contact the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass to request a confidential, no-cost consultation session. Call (214) 604-8833.
Common Questions and Concerns Following Allegations of Medicare Fraud by a Home Healthcare Provider
Home healthcare providers can spend many years establishing a strong reputation, but it only takes one allegation of Medicare fraud to result in the loss of everything you have worked so hard to achieve.
You likely have many questions and concerns, so our legal team has compiled information on some of the most frequent concerns and common questions that we receive from clients who are dealing with this type of case.
What Activities Are Considered Home Healthcare Medicare Fraud?
Medicare fraud and abuse are addressed by a number of different federal laws including the U.S. criminal code, the Social Security Act, the Physician Self-Referral Law, the Anti-Kickback statute and the False Claims Act.
There are a number of activities that may be considered illegal, ultimately constituting Medicare fraud. These activities include:
- Billing Medicare for services or equipment that were either not provided or not medically necessary;
- Billing for unbundled services;
- Falsifying medical records;
- Paying illegal “kickbacks;” and
- Money laundering.
If your home healthcare agency is being investigated for Medicare fraud, you should not delay in contacting an experienced defense attorney who specializes in helping doctors keep their medical licenses. Attorney Jeffrey C. Grass has extensive experience in this area of the law and knows what it takes to build a solid defense against these types of allegations.
What Are the Potential Penalties for Medicare Fraud?
Medicare fraud carries a number of extremely serious penalties, including:
- Repayment of any funds that were paid out by Medicare;
- Exclusion in future participation in federal healthcare programs, like Medicare and Medicaid;
- Criminal penalties;
- Civil liability;
- Steep fines;
- A prison sentence; and
- The loss of your medical license.
Due to the serious nature of the potential criminal, civil and professional consequences for Medicare fraud, it is essential that you take action immediately once you learn of the allegations.
There are some cases where the accusations are leveled by an upset client or a disgruntled employee. Even when the allegations are unfounded, it’s wise to consult a legal professional to represent you and your interests. There are some cases where information may be misconstrued as incriminating or exonerating evidence could be overlooked. For these reasons, it is critical that you consult a Medicare fraud lawyer regarding your case.
Why are Home Healthcare Professionals at Such High Risk of Medicare Fraud Allegations?
Home healthcare agencies tend to be at somewhat higher risk of Medicare fraud allegations due to a few different factors. Home healthcare agencies deal with a higher than average percentage of Medicare patients (when compared to other medical professionals), so this is one reason for the higher than average risk.
Home healthcare agencies are also a bit more vulnerable because services are rendered outside of a traditional healthcare facility. The centralized nature of the care provided in healthcare facilities is somewhat easier to track from a record keeping and billing perspective, plus most healthcare facilities also have video surveillance systems and other technology that can provide important evidence and insight – evidence and insight that generally isn’t present in a case involving a home healthcare provider.
Additionally, in recent years, the government has started cracking down on suspected cases of Medicare fraud, so more and more accusations have been leveled, with some of those allegations being unfounded. In fact, in June 2016, the U.S. Justice Department announced that it had executed the largest Medicare fraud takedown in history, with hundreds of individuals and agencies accused of wrong-doing across the nation. The Justice Department says that combined, these cases accounted for over $900 million.
Our Medicare Fraud Lawyers Offer a Highly Strategic Defense
Allegations of Medicare fraud can destroy a home healthcare agency as a whole, so it’s important to take action immediately once the allegations come to light. In addition to facing the possible loss of your license and a possible loss of your ability to accept Medicare clients in the future, it’s also possible that you may face criminal charges.
Our home healthcare Medicare fraud defense lawyers have the experience and the aggressive legal strategies required to defend your license, your reputation, your future, and your freedom.
Based in Texas, the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass were established by Attorney Jeffrey C. Grass. Attorney Grass has been practicing law for over 20 years, and he is an active member of the Health Law Section of the Texas State Bar. He is also a former U.S. Navy Judge Advocate (JAG) and he has also received an AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass, our legal team has worked hard to earn a reputation as some of the most well-regarded medical defense attorneys in Texas. We invite you to contact our law offices to discuss your case in a no-cost, fully confidential consultation. Call (214) 604-8833.