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Violations of the Federal Anti-kickback Statute

 Posted on February 28,2022 in Medical License Defense

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1692451894.jpgThere are several federal laws that have been put in place in order to protect patients by ensuring that there are no financial incentives or other conflicts of interest regarding referrals by healthcare providers. In our last post, we discussed the seriousness any accusations of violating the Physician Self-Referral Law (Stark Law) can have on a physician’s career. In this post, we will address the Federal Anti-Kickback Statute.

Federal Anti-Kickback Statute

Unlike the Stark Law, in which any violations are met with civil penalties, the Anti-Kickback Statute (AKS) is a criminal law, meaning that if a provider is found guilty of violating the statute, they now have a criminal record and could even face jail time depending on the circumstances of their case. Any criminal charges are classified as a felony.  

Under the AKS, it is a criminal offense to either exchange or offer to exchange something of value in order to persuade business referrals that would be reimbursed by any federal health care program, such as healthcare services and prescription medications.

This renumeration can fall under a number of different categories, including:

  • Cash

  • Very low or free office space rent

  • Excessive compensation for medical consults

  • Excessive compensation for medical directorships

  • Expensive hotel stays

  • Expensive meals at restaurants

  • Waiving co-pays

While these types of incentives are standard practice in many other industries, the AKS makes this type of business practice involving federal healthcare programs a federal offense.

 Penalties for AKS Violations

The AKS was put in place because of the increased costs and overutilization of healthcare services, the redirecting patients away from valid services, and the corruption of medical decision making this type of incentivizing was creating.

The law applies to both the entity offering the incentives and the entity accepting them. Penalties for violating the AKS are harsh no matter who you are. Anyone convicted faces:

  • Up to five years in prison

  • Fines of up to $50,000 for each violation plus triple the amount of the remuneration received

  • Exclusion from Medicaid and Medicare programs

Since AKA offenses are charged as felony, this also means a person found guilty is a convicted felon. A conviction would also most likely result in a physician’s medical license being revoked.

Contact an Illinois License Defense Attorney

If you have been accused of violating the AKS, you are facing significant penalties if you are convicted. Do not delay in contacting an Illinois AKS defense attorney immediately. Call The Law Offices of Joseph J. Bogdan, Inc. at 630-310-1267 to schedule a free and confidential consultation and find out what options you may have for defending against these accusations.




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