Types of Fraud
Fraud can cost the government millions of dollars a year at the expense of taxpayers. Deceptive practices and providing dishonest information can also reflect damages on civilians that have little power over large corporations. Whistleblowers are essential to retrieving most, if not all, of the money lost through government contractor, medical and healthcare, pharmaceutical and FDA, SEC and tax fraud. Whistleblower efforts are highly encouraged by the government to assist them in retrieving this money and are offered compensation, under the right circumstances, for their help.
Government Contractor Fraud
Government contractor fraud covers a large variety of practices and can directly effects the military soldiers. The government contracts out services and goods from profit and non-profit organizations to provide for the U.S. military items such as ammunition, clothing, computers, food, medical equipment and medications. Ranging anywhere from providing faulty products to overpricing products in contract, contractors can be found guilty of fraud and
Medical and Healthcare Fraud
Healthcare fraud can be committed by a wide range of people in the industry and is therefore more difficult to detect. Pharmacists, patients, employers, suppliers and providers can all take part in exploiting the healthcare system and it is often the prime target for fraud. Billing for services that were never provided, billing for services other than the ones provided to ensure coverage, performing unnecessary treatments for billing purposes, waiving co-payments, kickbacks and bribery to name a few can leave the healthcare system out millions of dollars. The healthcare statute imposes great fines and imprisonment for those convicted of this white-collar crime. Unlike many criminal cases, the presence of intent to commit is not a prerequisite for a guilty charge.
Pharmaceutical and FDA Fraud
The US Food and Drug Administration implements guidelines in order to ensure all food and medications are safe for human consumption. Pharmaceutical companies sometimes cut corners and therefore place users’ lives at risk. With refusal to comply with standards and procedures, big companies are illegally incurring millions of dollars while jeopardizing users’ health. Pharmaceutical companies can also be accused of fraud for offering kick-backs to physicians and employees, off label marketing and for committing health insurance fraud.
SEC, or the United States Securities and Exchanges Commission, oversees the U.S. securities market in order to protect investors, preserve the market and aid capital formation. The SEC is responsible for the securities and commodities markets. SEC fraud can be complicated and difficult to detect, however, these white collar offenses can result in up to 20 years in prison. The most common form of SEC fraud is insider trading, which is the use of insider knowledge when making stock purchasing and selling decisions. Other examples include broker embezzlement, manipulating stock prices and different fund frauds.
Federal tax fraud has become one of the most serious white collar financial crimes committed in the United States. When a corporation or an individual taxpayer intentionally neglects or refuses to follow rules set for by the Internal Revenue Service, civil or criminal action may be required. While mistakes will be made, the IRS will usually only audit those that purposely avoid paying any federal taxes. These offenses can include employment tax fraud, corporate tax fraud, and not reporting income accurately, among others.