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In June 2016, AmSurg Corp. and Envision Healthcare Holdings, Inc. (Envision) announced they have signed a definitive merger agreement pursuant to which the companies will combine in an all-stock transaction. Upon completion of the merger, which is expected to be tax-free to the shareholders of both organizations, the combined company will be named Envision Healthcare Corporation and co-headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee and Greenwood Village, Colorado. The company's common stock is expected to trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol: EVHC. Bass, Berry & Sims served as lead counsel on the transaction, led by Jim Jenkins. Read more.

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Inside the FCA blogInside the FCA blog features ongoing updates related to the False Claims Act (FCA), including insight on the latest legal decisions, regulatory developments and FCA settlements. The blog provides timely updates for corporate boards, directors, compliance managers, general counsel and other parties interested in the organizational impact and legal developments stemming from issues potentially giving rise to FCA liability.

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U.S. Supreme Court to Resolve Circuit Split on FCA Seal Breaches

Firm Publication


June 6, 2016

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court granted the petition for writ of certiorari in State Farm Fire and Casualty Co. v. United States ex rel. Rigsby and will consider what standard should determine when a relator's complaint should be dismissed for violating the FCA's seal requirement.  In Rigsby, former claims adjusters who worked with State Farm after Hurricane Katrina filed suit against the company under § 3730(b), alleging that State Farm misclassified wind damage as flood damage to shift the costs of paying those claims to the federal government.  After a jury found that State Farm falsely claimed that damages to a home in Mississippi were caused by flooding, the district court ordered State Farm to pay $758,000 in damages and awarded the relators $227,000.  State Farm appealed the verdict, citing the district court's failure to dismiss the lawsuit despite the district court's finding that the relators' attorneys breached the FCA's seal requirement by disclosing the existence of the case to the media.

The district court declined to dismiss the action because it found no evidence that the disclosure to media members resulted in a public disclosure in the news media that the action had been filed and concluded that the breach of the seal was not severe and did not hamper the government's investigation. Additionally, the district court found that the relators had not acted willfully or in bad faith because they did not authorize their attorneys' improper disclosures.

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Bass, Berry & Sims' Inside the FCA blog features news, commentary and thought leadership covering FCA, healthcare fraud and procurement fraud.



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