COVID-19 Testing Fraud: What You Should Know
Given the rising rates of COVID-19 infections and the continued need for COVID-19 testing in Texas and across the country, the government is increasing its scrutiny of COVID-related fraud schemes, particularly as they pertain to testing. There are many different ways in which COVID-19 testing fraud can occur, and individuals and business entities Canberra targeted and face serious criminal charges and civil penalties under federal law for involvement in any fraud scheme. It is important to remember that taking steps toward committing fraud, or being involved in the planning of a fraud scheme, is often enough to lead to a prosecution for the fraud offense itself or for a conspiracy offense.
Our Dallas COVID-19 fraud lawyers want to provide you with more information about how COVID-19 testing fraud is happening and what you should do if you are under investigation.
What is COVID-19 Testing Fraud?
What is COVID-19 testing fraud? It can take many different forms, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
References to COVID-19 testing fraud may refer to any step in the process of seeking or obtaining a COVID-19 test, supplies for at-home testing, test results, medication in relation to positive test results, or information supplied when getting a COVID-19 test. Depending upon the type of specific fraudulent activity, a person may or may not get accurate or false COVID-19 test results. In many cases involving COVID-19 fraud, a test is accurately conducted at a pharmacy or other testing location, but fraudulent payments are collected, or sensitive personal information is stolen. The following are some examples of COVID-19 testing fraud that may result in federal prosecutions:
· Selling fraudulent COVID-19 tests or testing supplies;
· Collecting payment from individuals for COVID-19 tests at the testing location when the test is free of charge;
· Collecting government payment for tests but failing to supply the tests to individuals or testing entities, or to provide results from the tests;
· Issuing fraudulent bills to the government for COVID-19 tests that were never taken or processed;
· Contacting a person and making a false statement about that person’s COVID-19 test results;
· Stealing personal or sensitive information from people through COVID-19 test details, such as Social Security numbers or account information;
· Sending false information about COVID-19 testing, supplies, test purchases, or test results through the mail;
· Sending false information about COVID-19 testing, supplies, test purchases, or test results through text or email;
· Misrepresentation as an employee of a COVID-19 testing company in order to obtain private or sensitive information; and/or
· Seeking payment for COVID-19 treatments after supplying a fraudulent positive test result.
Federal Laws Prohibiting COVID-19 Testing Fraud
COVID-19 testing fraud may be charged under federal criminal statutes concerning health care fraud, insurance fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, and other related laws depending upon how the COVID-19 testing fraud scheme is conducted or how a person is allegedly defrauded. In situations where an electronic communication device (including a phone or the internet) is used for purposes of furthering the fraud, a person or entity may face mail or wire fraud charges in addition to health care fraud or insurance fraud charges.
No matter what type of federal fraud charges you may be facing in connection with allegations of COVID-19 testing fraud, it is essential to have a fraud defense lawyer who can help you.
Contact Our Dallas Fraud Defense Attorneys
Are you being investigated for COVID-19 testing fraud, or have you been arrested for or charged with a federal fraud offense? One of our Texas fraud defense lawyers can speak with you today.Contact the Law Office of Patrick J. McLain, PLLC for more information.