Cannabis has become big business in this country. In 2022, U.S. medical and recreational cannabis sales reached $30 billion. In fact, last year, Americans spent more money on marijuana than chocolate and craft beer combined. By 2027, sales are projected to reach more than $53 billion.
Like any other enterprise, those in the cannabis industry experience typical business disputes, ranging from vendor under/lack of performance, to issues with governmental regulatory bodies. Sometimes those disputes require cannabis businesses to resort to the courts to resolve those issues ...
Finds that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services put its “thumb on the scale”
On Monday February 8, a judge in the Eastern District of Texas again rejected the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Independent Dispute Resolution (IDR) rules on the grounds that the Rules continued to “put a thumb on the scale” for the arbitrator’s reliance on the Qualified Payment Amount (QPA) contrary to the statutory language of the No Surprises Act.
It has been four years since Congress enacted the Eliminating Kickbacks in Recovery Act (“EKRA”), codified at 18 U.S.C. § 220. EKRA initially targeted patient brokering and kickback schemes within the addiction treatment and recovery spaces. However, since EKRA was expansively drafted to also apply to clinical laboratories (it applies to improper referrals for any “service”, regardless of the payor), public as well as private insurance plans and even self-pay patients fall within the reach of the statute.
On April 20, 2022, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced a nationwide coordinated law enforcement action to combat health care-related COVID-19 fraud. In line with the announcement, the federal government has continued throughout this year to focus its enforcement on fraud in the COVID-19 space, particularly on misuse of Provider Relief funds and COVID-19 testing fraud.
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