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April 21, 2023

U.S. Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in False Claims Act Case

On April 18, 2023, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two consolidated cases (Nos. 21-1326 and 22-111) testing the False Claims Act’s “scienter” intent standard. The question at issue in the cases is whether defendants can be found to have acted “knowingly” (i.e., acting with actual knowledge, deliberate ignorance, or in reckless disregard to the truth or falsity of the information) based on conduct that represented an objectively reasonable interpretation of the legal requirement, even if the defendants subjectively considered their conduct unlawful. The Court’s decision is expected to be the most significant development for the Act in recent history, as it will likely affect what evidence is admissible at trial, as well as the scope of discovery.

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