Article by Christine Kirchner on “5 Tips for Responding to Civil Investigative Demands”
In an article published in Risk Management Magazine on September 17, 2020, Houston-based shareholder Christine Kirchner discusses what civil investigative demands are and how to thoughtfully prepare a response.
“Civil investigative demands or letters, also referred to as CIDs, are powerful tools for the Attorney General and other government agencies to collect and acquire information necessary for an investigation that could result in the prosecution of individuals or entities,” explain Kirchner. “CIDs target individuals or entities believed to have defrauded the U.S. government or abused governmental programs.”
CIDs can be sent to medical providers and health care companies being investigated for fraud or submitting false claims to government health care programs, as well as federal government contractors that allegedly inflated pricing for labor or materials or otherwise engaged in improper billing, or “false claim” practices.
Kirchner further explains what companies should do upon receipt of the CID, how to determine the scope of the CID, how to determine if the CID is a target of a fraud investigation and explains how to ensure information provided Is complete and accurate.
“Responding to a CID requires prompt and skilled attention during the typical 20-day response period,” said Kirchner. “Quick planning can lead to either a cooperative and successful provision of information or, in the worst case, an open dialogue with the DOJ or other governmental agency that could mitigate the investigation’s impact, and ideally, prevent reputational harm and keep the process civil.”