For Immediate Release: January 8, 2013
Qui Tam False Claims Act Lawsuit filed by Jennifer Perez
On January 8, 2013, Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced a $2.4 million settlement against Stericycle, Inc., one of the largest medical waste disposal companies in the United States, for overcharging nearly 1,000 New York government entities. The lawsuit which was filed by Jennifer Perez, a former employee of Stericycle, in Federal Court in Chicago in 2008 and was amended on June 28, 2010 to add the State of New York as a plaintiff and state a claim for relief under the New York False Claim Act.
The New York State False Claims Act is modeled after Federal False Claims Act, which dates back to the Civil War and is known as “Lincoln’s Law.” The New York False Claims Act permits persons who have information about possible fraud against the New York State to file a lawsuit on behalf of New York State and share between 15-30% if the government recovers money from the defendant.
Under the settlement agreement, Ms. Perez’s share of the recovery is 20% of the damages paid by Stericycle or $480,000. Because Attorney General Scheiderman required Stericycle to pay damages of about three times the actual amount of overbillings, Ms. Perez’s recovery will not reduce the amount of actual damages recovered by any of the government entities that suffered from the scheme. In addition to the monies paid to New York State, Stericycle agreed to pay attorneys’ fees and costs of $150,000.
Ms. Perez is also represented by James T. Ratner, Esq. based in Woodstock, New York, David Koenigsberg, Esq. of Menz Bonner Komar & Koenigsberg LLP, and Michael C. Rosenblat based in Northbrook, Illinois.