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Case Digest on United States ex rel. Polansky v. Executive Health Resources, Inc.

Case Digest on United States ex rel. Polansky v. Executive Health Resources, Inc.
This case examined the authority of the government to dismiss False Claims Act (FCA) lawsuits initiated by whistleblowers (relators) after declining initial intervention, and the appropriate standard for courts to apply when considering such dismissal motions.


The Supreme Court's decision in this case clarifies significant aspects of the FCA, particularly regarding the government's involvement and dismissal rights in qui tam actions initiated by private individuals on its behalf.

Facts of the Case:

Jesse Polansky, a whistleblower, filed a qui tam lawsuit alleging that Executive Health Resources assisted hospitals in overbilling Medicare. The government initially chose not to intervene, but later sought dismissal of the action, citing the disproportionate burden of litigation compared to the potential recovery.

Issue of the Case:

The Court addressed whether the government can dismiss a qui tam action under the FCA after initially declining to intervene and the standard that courts should apply in such dismissals.

Ruling of the Case:

The Supreme Court held that the government could move to dismiss an FCA action at any point after it intervenes, regardless of whether the intervention occurs during the initial seal period or later. The Court also established that the standard for dismissal aligns with Rule 41(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, which governs voluntary dismissals in civil litigation.

This ruling underscores the government's significant role and discretion in FCA cases, reinforcing its ability to control the litigation process and protect its interests, even when it initially opts not to participate directly in a qui tam action.


The decision affirms the government's broad authority to manage FCA lawsuits, emphasizing the balance between encouraging whistleblower actions and allowing the government to dismiss claims that it deems not in its best interest.