SENATE, No. 2824

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

214th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED APRIL 11, 2011

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  JOSEPH F. VITALE

District 19 (Middlesex)

Senator  ROBERT M. GORDON

District 38 (Bergen)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Clarifies the effective date of the “New Jersey False Claims Act.”

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


An Act concerning false claims and amending P.L.2007, c.265.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    Section 11 of P.L.2007, c.265 (C.2A:32C-11) is amended to read as follows:

     11.  a. A civil action under [this act] P.L.2007, c.265 (C.2A:32C-1 et seq.) may not be brought:

     [a.] (1) More than six years after the date on which the violation of the act is committed; or

   [b.] (2)       More than three years after the date when facts material to the right of action are known or reasonably should have been known by the State official charged with responsibility to act in the circumstances, but in no event more than 10 years after the date on which the violation is committed, whichever occurs last.

     b.    P.L.2007, c.265 (C.2A:32C-1 et seq.) shall apply to all acts committed before March 13, 2008 provided that:

     (1) the civil action filed pursuant to the “New Jersey False Claims Act,” P.L. 2007, c.265 (C.2A:32C-1 et seq.) is brought within the applicable statute of limitations set out in subsection a. of this section; and

     (2) the act that is the basis of the claim was not previously the subject of an action involving the “New Jersey Medical Assistance and Health Services Act,” P.L.1968, c.413 (C.30:4D-1 et seq.) filed by the same claimant under the “New Jersey False Claims Act,” P.L.2007, c.265 (C.2A:32C-1 et seq.) or the federal False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. sec. 3729 et seq. prior to the enactment of P.L.    , c.      (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).

(cf: P.L.2007, c.265, s.11)

 

     2.    This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill would provide that the “New Jersey False Claims Act,” P.L.2007, c.265 (C.2A:32C-1 et seq.) would apply to certain acts committed before its effective date.

     The False Claims Act imposes civil penalties on any person who submits a claim to the State that he knows or should know is false. The act also authorizes the Attorney General, on behalf of the State, to bring a civil action against the person to recover any funds fraudulently obtained.  In addition, the act allows a private individual who has knowledge of the fraud to bring the civil action. Depending on the circumstances, the private individual may be entitled to receive a percentage of the funds collected.

     The act, which was signed on January 13, 2008, took effect on March 13, 2008.  

     The bill provides that the “New Jersey False Claims Act” would apply to acts committed before March 13, 2008 provided that two conditions apply:

     (1) the civil action under the “New Jersey False Claims Act” must be brought within the applicable statute of limitations set forth in N.J.S.A.2A:32C-11; and

     (2) the act that is the basis of the claim was not previously the subject of an action involving Medicaid that was filed by the same claimant under the “New Jersey False Claims Act” or the federal False Claims Act.

     The statute of limitations of the “New Jersey False Claims Act,” which would not be changed by this bill, provides that the civil action may not be brought:

     More than six years after the date on which the violation is committed; or

   More than three years after the date when facts material to the right of action are known or reasonably should have been known by the State official charged with responsibility to act in the circumstances, but in no event more than 10 years after the date on which the violation is committed, whichever occurs last.

     Under the bill, given the 10-year statute of limitations, a claim that accrued after March 13, 1998 could be the subject of a False Claims action as long as the act was not previously the subject of an action involving Medicaid that was filed by the same claimant under the New Jersey or federal False Claims Acts.