Healthcare fraud is the act by which medical providers overcharge or fraudulently charge patients for services they did not receive or did not need, thereby inflating their payment from an insurance company. Healthcare fraud is illegal—and, like other fraud crimes, it can be tried as a federal offense. Healthcare fraud generally occurs through private insurance carriers, but can also be perpetrated through Medicare and Medicaid. Healthcare fraud costs innocent people money because it causes healthcare costs to go up. If you are being charged with healthcare fraud, it is important that you speak with an experienced criminal defense lawyer.
Commonly, healthcare fraud is perpetrated through medical billing. When a healthcare provider sends out bills to insurers, they add extra charges or “pad” the bills. This results in the healthcare provider getting “free” money—either for procedures they never did or for medication/supplies that were never used. Healthcare fraud is particularly common with pricey diagnostic tests, whereby providers will bill insurance companies for tests that they never performed.
Fraud crimes can be punishable with jail time, monetary fines, probation, and parole. A defendant who is found guilty will usually have to pay restitution to the victims of their fraudulent activity. Additionally, a fraud conviction can mar one’s reputation and hinder his/her ability to be well-respected business people. If you have been accused of healthcare fraud, you need to contact a skilled defense attorney so you can devise a defense strategy.
Okabe & Haushalter is a top-rated legal firm that understands how upsetting it can be to be facing criminal charges. We have helped numerous clients with their criminal defense, and we may be able to help you, as well. We will refuse to settle out of court if we think you can receive a better outcome at trial. If the circumstances are right, we may be able to have your charges reduced or altogether dropped.
If you are being charged with healthcare fraud, contact a fraud lawyer from our firm!