Sunday, May 20, 2012

Middle District of Florida Permits Arbitration of FCA Retaliation Claim

Middle District of Florida U.S. District Judge John Antoon II recently held that both False Claims Act ("FCA") retaliation claims, 18 USC 3730(h), and claims brought pursuant to the Florida Whistleblower Act are subject to arbitration where the parties have previously agreed.  In United States ex rel Hepburn v. Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., (May 8, 2012) 2012 W: 1631682 (M.D. Fla.), the Court granted a motion to compel arbitration of the FCA and Florida Whistleblower Act claims pursuant to an "arbitration policy" that was contained in the relator's employment agreement.

This is the second case I've featured in the blog on arbitrating such claims:  see Court Finds FCA Retaliation Claim Subject to Arbitration.  The Court in Hepburn did not cite any FCA specific authority in making its ruling, nor did the prior case, James v. Conceptus, Inc. (S.D. Tex. 2012).  A review of the Defendant's Motion to Dismiss and to Compel Arbitration in Hepburn, however, cites several cases that find that arbitration is appropriate for FCA claims, and readers might find those cites to be helpful.

A. Brian Albritton
May 20, 2012

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