The False Claims Act exists as a piece of legislation that discusses qui tam. It is a long-standing act first created in 1863, and it has undergone numerous changes over the years, with the most recent being in 2010.
This anti-fraud law offers some of the oldest and most sustainable advice on qui tam.
Qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act
The U.S. Department of Justice discusses the False Claims Act in detail. This act initially came from the Civil War, allowing for the prosecution of certain people who attempted to defraud the U.S. military by providing certain supplies to the Union.
Under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act, anyone can sue another party on behalf of the government for any known violations. Thus, if a regular citizen were to discover someone doing something to defraud the government, they could file a case against that person.
In essence, the government itself cannot be everywhere at once. In many cases, private citizens have access to information that government officials do not, too.
Why people can act on the government’s behalf
Thus, this act allows for said private citizens to act on the additional information they may stumble across. The government belongs to the people, so this is just one way in which the people may protect what belongs to them. This is especially true regarding government-related fraudulent schemes, as the taxpayers will eventually feel the financial loss.
To file a qui tam act, know that it will undergo investigation by the court while the claim remains under seal for a period of 60 days. Investigators can extend this period. After the period ends, the government will decide how to proceed with the case.