Washington, D.C., (May 15, 2024) – National law firm Bass, Berry & Sims is continuing to grow its preeminent Compliance & Government Investigations Practice with the addition of Denise M. Barnes, a former federal prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) who joins as a member in Washington, D.C.

Barnes brings extensive experience as a former federal prosecutor with DOJ, bolstering the firm’s government investigations, procurement fraud, healthcare fraud, and white-collar capabilities. With her DOJ experience, Barnes joins a number of attorneys at the firm who have held significant leadership positions with DOJ and other federal agencies.

“We are excited to welcome another former federal prosecutor to the firm. Denise brings invaluable perspective from her work with DOJ, which included high-profile matters involving health systems, financial institutions, and government contractors. She is uniquely positioned to advise clients facing government investigations and related litigation,” said Todd J. Rolapp, managing partner of Bass, Berry & Sims.

Barnes joins the firm’s Healthcare Fraud Task Force, a team of more than 50 attorneys known for successfully litigating and resolving False Claims Act matters nationwide and representing clients in investigations brought by government regulators. The firm’s healthcare practice is nationally recognized by Chambers USA and in 2024 Bass, Berry & Sims was ranked as the third-largest healthcare practice in the nation by the American Health Law Association.

“Denise shares our commitment to providing high-caliber, sophisticated legal counsel to clients in the healthcare sector’s increasingly complex legal landscape. Her deep understanding of the False Claims Act will be of tremendous value to clients, as we continue to handle high-stakes investigations and litigation around the country,” said Lisa Rivera, chair of the firm’s Compliance & Government Investigations Practice.

While a Trial Attorney with DOJ, Barnes practiced in the Fraud Section of DOJ’s Civil Division for seven years, focusing primarily on fraud cases, including procurement, healthcare fraud and financial fraud. She led dozens of investigations into allegations of violations of the False Claims Act, the Anti-Kickback Statute, Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act, and other federal anti-fraud statutes. She earned a Special Commendation Award from the DOJ Civil Division in 2019 related to her work on the Residential Mortgage Backed Securities (RMBS) Fraud Team.

Through her work at DOJ and in private practice, Barnes has extensive experience handling issues related to compliance, white-collar and regulatory investigations, and complex commercial litigation. Barnes represents businesses in public and non-public investigations, regulatory inquiries, and proceedings involving federal and state agencies. She frequently assists clients navigating government investigations related to allegations arising under the False Claims Act, the Anti-Kickback Statute, and the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act.

“I am thrilled to join Bass, Berry & Sims. The firm has a stellar reputation in representing clients in government investigations and False Claims Act litigation, as well as having excellent healthcare and government contracts practices. I look forward to practicing with this outstanding team,” Barnes said.

Barnes is the latest addition to the firm’s Washington, D.C. office, which has attracted more than 20 lateral hires in the last four years.

Barnes is a recognized leader in the industry, frequently participating in various speaking engagements and authoring articles on critical topics such as cybersecurity, government contract billing, and various developments related to the False Claims Act. Barnes is also considered an authority on matters involving FIRREA and financial fraud, generally.

Barnes earned a law degree from the Howard University School of Law (2009) and an undergraduate degree in business administration from the University of Michigan (2006).

About Bass, Berry & Sims PLC

Bass, Berry & Sims is a national law firm with more than 350 attorneys dedicated to delivering exceptional service to numerous publicly traded companies and Fortune 500 businesses in significant litigation and investigations, complex business transactions and international regulatory matters. Our people are true partners who work seamlessly across substantive practice disciplines, industries and geographies to deliver highly-effective legal advice and innovative, business-focused solutions. In 2022, the firm celebrated its centennial anniversary and continues to build on our foundational attributes of agility, tenacity and collaboration. For more information, visit www.bassberry.com.

Media Coverage

This announcement was covered in several media outlets, including: