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What to know if you are accused of Medicare fraud

The Department of Justice states that health care fraud costs the country tens of billions of dollars every year. With so much money at stake, it is no surprise Medicare fraud cases are drawing increased attention from the government. Medicare fraud is a federal crime, and the government has a large budget to pursue individuals accused of fraud.

With your work as a medical professional, you have treated many patients over the course of your career. Occasionally, clerical errors happen. Unfortunately, these types of errors could provide cause for the government to open a Medicare fraud investigation against you.

Not only would an investigation damage your reputation, it could affect your ability to serve patients. If convicted of Medicare fraud, you cannot accept patients that use Medicare. As a responsible medical professional, you need to understand how to protect yourself from such charges.

You may be audited or asked for an interview

Most Medicare fraud cases start out with an audit. You may receive a letter in the mail requesting documentation. It is important you provide all the information requested to the investigators, and any documentation that might rebut their claims. You also have the right to request a hearing, but you may want to contact an attorney before you do so.

You may also be asked for an interview, if you are under investigation. Provide accurate and honest information is crucial for your defense.

A Medicare fraud charge does not necessarily mean you are guilty

Even if you dispute the government’s claims, the agency may decide to move forward with a case against you.It does not necessarily mean you are guilty. You have the right to defend your reputation and mount a proper defense.

Does your attorney handle federal cases?

Consider contacting an attorney with experience defending against federal fraud charges. Not all attorneys specialize in federal crimes. Of the lawyers that argue federal cases, not all of these routinely handle Medicare fraud cases.

Does the law firm have sufficient resources?

The government will conduct a thorough investigation, so should your attorney. To mount a proper defense, an attorney should conduct his or her own investigation. The law firm will need resources to hire medical and financial experts. These experts can pick apart the allegations against you and help build your defense.

An accusation of Medicare fraud may seem like it will ruin your medical career. With the proper representation, you can protect your reputation and your right to continue treating your patients.

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