The False Claims Act allows people who are employed by companies receiving federal benefits, such as grants, to file actions against their employer for defrauding the federal government. These claimants are informally known as "whistleblowers." Persons filing under the Act stand to receive a portion (usually about 15-25 percent) of any recovered damages. The Act provides a legal tool to counteract fraudulent billings turned in to the federal government. Claims are most commonly filed by persons with insider knowledge of false claims involving health care, military, or other government spending programs.
David Antoon, a retired Air Force colonel, has tried multiple times to recover from the Cleveland Clinic for complications he experienced after surgery for prostate cancer. A federal appeals court has rejected his lawsuit. The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found Mr. Antoon had no legal standing to bring allegations of fraud against the Cleveland Clinic and his surgeon, Dr. Jihad Kaouk.