The Whistleblower Institute announces that Virginia Department of Social Services reached a $7.1 million settlement.
San Diego, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/29/2017 -- The Whistleblower Institute announces that Virginia Department of Social Services reached a $7.1 million settlement over violation of the False Claims Act in its administration of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formally known as the Food Stamp Program.
Those who have a similar case or experienced a similar situation or any other wrongdoing within a corporation have certain options and should contact the Whistleblower Institute at firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 619-452–1218. There are no costs or obligations to you.
According to the Department of Justice, as part of the settlement, VDSS allegedly admitted that, beginning in 2010, it retained Julie Osnes Consulting, a quality control consultant, to reduce its SNAP benefits determination error rate by training VDSS quality control workers to "use whatever means necessary" to find a benefits decision "correct" rather than finding an error. Allegedly, VDSS also admitted that if its quality control staff "could not find a way to make a benefits decision correct," they were instructed to "find a reason to 'drop' the case, or eliminate it from the sample." VDSS allegedly acknowledged that this outcome-driven method, as implemented by VDSS between 2010 and 2015, "injected bias into the case review process" because it was designed to lower VDSS's reported error rate by falsely reporting errors as "correct" or eliminating them from the sample. Through its use of these biased methods, VDSS was improperly awarded USDA performance bonuses for 2011, 2012, and 2013.
In addition, VDSS allegedly admitted that VDSS quality control workers did not want to use the methods proposed by Julie Osnes Consulting because they believed the methods lacked integrity, injected bias into the quality control process, and violated USDA requirements, and that they communicated these concerns to their supervisors. VDSS admitted that the former VDSS quality control manager pressured and intimidated these employees to force them to adopt these methods, including, according to these employees, threatening termination, providing negative performance reviews, taking away teleworking and flexible scheduling privileges, and engaging in other forms of harassment and retaliation.
Reportedly, VDSS had taken certain corrective actions beginning in 2015, including terminating its use of the improper quality controls methods devised by Julie Osnes Consulting.
Virginia Department of Social Services is a state supervised and locally administered social services system. VDSS programs are designed to help Virginia's most vulnerable citizens find permanent solutions to life's many challenges.
The Whistleblower Institute is an information portal for current or former employees and other people having insight information about wrongdoing and other illegal activities by individuals either individually or within corporations, through company culture and or within international affairs. Whistleblowers should keep in mind that under the Dodd-Frank Act any person who provides the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") with original information that leads to a successful enforcement action with over $1 million recovered must be awarded between 10%-30% of the total amount recovered. In order to determine the total amount of the reward there are numerous factors that need to be considered. Whistleblower actions are complex and our goal is to guide any whistleblower every step of the way. The Whistleblower Institute is dedicated to partnering with any individual who have information about fraud and we work with many of the best law firms worldwide.
Those who have a similar case or experienced a similar situation or any other wrongdoing within a corporation have certain options and should contact the Whistleblower Institute.
2534 State Street - Suite 406
San Diego, CA 92101, USA
Phone: +1 (619) 452–1218
Facsimile: +1 (619) 785 – 3185
The material was prepared by the Whistleblower Institute for informational purposes only and is not legal or financial advice. The information is provided only as general information which may or may not reflect the most currently available public information, is not provided as a basis for any established or existing relationship, and is not intended to constitute legal or financial advice, or to substitute for obtaining such advice from an attorney or other advisor licensed in your state.