A whistleblower who uncovered unlawful conduct at Novartis and reported it to authorities will receive a share of a $19.9 million settlement the company has agreed to pay in Texas. The whistleblower will also recover their attorneys' fees related to the case.
According to a press release issued by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, the whistleblower accused Swiss-based pharmaceutical drug company Novartis of engaging in unlawful and deceptive marketing of a topical skin cream product. After investigating the complaint, the State concluded that Novartis unlawfully marketed eczema drug Elidel to treat infant children while failing to disclose the drug’s known harmful side effects – including cancer-related risks.
The Texas Attorney General's release states: "Evidence uncovered by the State revealed that Novartis improperly urged physicians to prescribe Elidel to children under two years of age for purposes that had not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Because of the defendant’s misrepresentations, the Texas Medicaid program overpaid for Elidel prescriptions."
Novartis agreed to pay a total of $19.9 million to resolve the State of Texas and the federal government’s allegations of off-label marketing. The whistleblower, who is not named in the press release, will receive a portion of that recovery plus their attorneys' fees. Under most false claims act statutes with whistleblower or qui tam provisions, the whistleblower is entitled to between 15% and 25% of the amount actually recovered by the government. In this case, that could amount to a reward of between $3 million and $5 million for the whistleblower.
If you have information that a pharmaceutical company is engaged in deceptive marketing, promoting drugs for off-label uses, or paying kickbacks to health care professionals, then you should consult with an experienced lawyer immediately. To schedule a free and confidential consultation by telephone or in person, call my office today at (917) 652-6504 or click here to communicate with me via email.
New York, New York
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. I invite you to contact our law offices and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. I practice law and offer legal services only in jurisdictions where I am properly authorized to do so. I do not seek to represent anyone in any jurisdiction where this web site does not comply with applicable laws and bar rules.