US Joins Whistleblower Suit Against The Gallup Organization
According to the Department of Justice, the federal government has decided to partially intervene in a lawsuit against The Gallup Organization initially brought by a whistleblower under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act. Gallup, based in Washington, D.C. is the country’s most well-known polling firm. The whistleblower, Michael Lindley, was Gallup’s director of client services from February 2008 until he was terminated in July 2009. According to Lindley, he was terminated after threatening to report Gallup’s alleged overbillings to the government.
According to the whistleblower, Gallup routinely submitted inflated bills to the U.S. Mint, FEMA, the U.S. Passport Agency and other federal agencies for polling services provided for various government programs. The whistleblower alleged that Gallup essentially maintained two sets of books: one set reflecting the real costs to perform the work; and a second set that was submitted to government agencies containing inflated costs. The Complaint also alleges that the government paid Gallup based on the inflated estimates rather than on Gallup’s actual, much lower, costs to perform the work.
As an example of the False Claims Act violations, the qui tam Complaint cites a $2 million annual contract with the U.S. Mint to conduct surveys concerning the likely purchasers of newly minted coins. The whistleblower alleges that Gallup inflated the number of hours needed to complete the work by 2-3 times in the budget it submitted to the U.S. Mint.
The whistleblower asserted additional claims against Gallup that were not adopted by the Justice Department in the government’s decision to intervene. The U.S., however, indicated in the notice of its intervention that it plans to assert additional claims concerning Gallup’s subcontract for services with FEMA.
If you have any firsthand knowledge, information, or evidence related to any federal, state, county or city government fraud, you should speak with an experienced qui tam lawyer who can help you understand your legal rights and help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
If you have a claim, contact the Florida whistleblower attorneys at Rabin Kammerer Johnson for a free and confidential consultation by calling toll free at 877.915.4040.