What Should I Look For In a Qui Tam Lawyer?

It is a personal decision because it has to be a lawyer that you can work with. Not every lawyer is going to be the right lawyer for any individual Qui Tam plaintiff. You have to have some level of comfort with that attorney. There are many good attorneys in the country.

There are a group of attorneys that do this a lot and within that group of attorneys that do this a lot, you want a lawyer that you can really talk to everyday about your case at least until you can get it put together and filed because there are many details involved in a Qui Tam action to go over. You are going to require comfort with that attorney to be able to remember everything and work with that attorney to be sure that the right facts are presented to the government.

Roles of a Qui Tam Lawyer In Your Case

It is trying to get all the information out of the plaintiff-relator and learning about the plaintiff-relator’s industry as much as possible. It is also a role of:

  • Trying to explain the process to a client and it is not a very easy process to go through. Sometimes trying to explain the government’s position may not be exactly what the client wants to hear.
  • Of course, to explain the client’s position to the government is a big role.

So there are a lot of sort of intermediary roles but also roles of trying to put the best case together to present to the government that is possible.

In some degree a lawyer is a confidante, investigator, litigator, advisor, and a watchdog. You are always trying to determine the strength of the case and certainly initially to determine if the case doesn’t work and I guess that would be the watchdog role. You have to be able to say, “Look this case is not going to work, sorry.” and or, “Oh wow, this is a tremendous case.” So to some degree a lot of that.

These cases have to be filed under seal and kept secret for a while, so it is fair to say that a False Claims Acts lawyer or a Qui Tam lawyer has to be a confidante.