Staten Island Health Care Fraud Defense Lawyer

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Staten Island Health Care Fraud Defense Lawyer

Health Care Fraud, Fraudulent Medicare/Medicaid, Billing of Equipment

Defending Staten Island Clients in Health Care Fraud Cases

Medical professionals often bill various health care institutions for the services they provide, from billing of equipment to sending claims to government health care agencies such as Medicaid and Medicare. Therefore, health care professionals and their staff members need to be completely accurate and honest in all health care claims, especially those made to government programs. Failure to do so could lead to severe criminal penalties and loss of professional licenses. If you are accused of defrauding any government health care program in any way, a Staten Island health care fraud defense lawyer can offer your best chance of defending yourself against the severe penalties that would follow conviction.

Attorney Michael Vitaliano is a former New York assistant district attorney with years of experience as a prosecutor. During his time on the prosecutorial side of the New York criminal justice system, he participated in many high-profile and complex criminal cases, including those pertaining to fraud. Today, Attorney Vitaliano offers criminal defense representation to clients in Staten Island, NY. If you are a health care professional facing health care fraud charges, he can provide the detail-oriented and responsive defense representation you need to navigate your case with confidence and peace of mind.

What Is Health Care Fraud?

The government health care programs that commonly experience fraud, such as the New York Medicaid program, manage incredibly vast sums of money. While these funds exist to cover the cost of medical treatments that New York residents require but cannot afford out of pocket, they are often unfortunately misused in several ways, sometimes for the personal gain of health care professionals. Additionally, health care fraud can occur unintentionally when health care providers and their billing departments make errors on their filings that go unchecked. Unfortunately, even mistakes can lead to criminal penalties for fraud in Medicare and Medicaid programs.

Attempting to defraud an individual health care provider, a health insurance company, a government-funded health care program, or the state of New York itself all qualify as health care fraud and will entail various penalties based on the severity of the offenses involved. Some of the most commonly reported types of health care fraud in New York include:

  • Fraudulent front organizations. It’s common for individuals to establish businesses with the sole purpose of fraudulently obtaining funds from Medicaid, Medicare, and other health care programs.
  • Illegal prescription drug sales. Prescribing doctors may only prescribe medications that align with the standard of care their patients’ conditions require. Therefore, a doctor who charges under-the-table premiums for specific prescriptions, typically for the purchaser to use the drug in question illegally and without a legitimate medical need, is guilty of defrauding the health care system.
  • Improper billing. Some health care providers intentionally bill for services they do not actually provide but are covered through Medicare, Medicaid, or other health care funding systems.
  • Duplicate billing. Some health care providers will double-bill for services to Medicaid, Medicare, and other health care programs as well as private insurers. Unfortunately, this type of double-dipping can go overlooked for quite a long time.
  • Overbilling of medical services. Some health care providers may attempt to defraud government health care programs by overstating the cost of the services they provide.

These examples of health care fraud divert funds from programs that exist to help patients who cannot afford the costs of their treatments. In addition, when a health care provider knowingly engages in health care fraud, they face losing their license to practice, hefty fines, and even prison time. For example, defrauding the United States federal Medicaid program can entail a fine of $22,000 for each intentional violation, and the party responsible could spend up to five years in prison for each offense prosecuted at the federal level.

There are many oversight systems in place designed to catch fraud, and the government agencies operating health care systems in New York have various tools they can use to uncover and investigate fraud when it happens. Unfortunately, however, many health care providers are wrongfully charged with health care fraud due to honest mistakes, technology-related malfunctions, and other mishaps that jeopardize their careers.

How to Defend Yourself Against Health Care Fraud Charges

It’s vital to be as proactive as possible when your medical practice is accused of health care fraud of any kind. One of the best steps you can take if you know you did not intentionally engage in any fraudulent activity is to immediately conduct an audit of all your relevant billing records. In some cases, these audits can reveal the technical issues that led to health care fraud charges or prove providers’ innocence.

It’s vital to be as proactive as possible when your medical practice is accused of health care fraud of any kind. One of the best steps you can take if you know you did not intentionally engage in any fraudulent activity is to immediately conduct an audit of all your relevant billing records. In some cases, these audits can reveal the technical issues that led to health care fraud charges or prove providers’ innocence.

If you knew about the fraud but were coerced or forced into participating in any way, this may form a reasonable defense in your health care fraud case. Your Staten Island health care fraud lawyer will want to review all evidence in the case to determine who was directly responsible for the fraud, their motivations for engaging in the fraudulent activities, and whether they had knowledge and intention to commit health care fraud.

Find Your Staten Island Health Care Fraud Defense Lawyer Now

Health care fraud cases at the state level can entail significant penalties, and those prosecuted in federal court can potentially lead to hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars in fines and years in prison. Therefore, if you were forced into participating in a health care fraud scam of any kind, or if you unwittingly committed health care fraud due to a billing mistake or miscommunication, you need defense representation you can trust to guide you through your case.

Attorney Michael Vitaliano is here to help you through this challenging situation. You can rely on him and his team to gather all exculpatory evidence you need to establish your innocence and guide you through the complex legal proceedings you face. Our team has years of experience navigating the most complicated fraud cases, and we know the extent of the government regulations that typically come into play in these cases. Rest assured, we can guide you through every phase of your case with responsive and detail-oriented legal counsel.

Contact Attorney Michael Vitaliano today to schedule a consultation about your health care fraud case in Staten Island.

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