Thursday, June 08, 2006

Eighth Circuit Holds Particularity Requirement Will Not Be Relaxed for Qui Tam Relator to Conduct Discovery to Meet Pleading Requirement

Per U.S. ex rel Joshi v. St. Luke’s Hosp., Inc., 441 F.3d 552 (8th Cir. Mar. 6, 2006):

Dr. Joshi argues the district court erred in not permitting him to conduct discovery in order to satisfy Rule 9(b)'s pleading requirements. Although Dr. Joshi couches his argument in terms of a discovery request, we view his argument more generally as a request to relax Rule 9(b)'s pleading requirements by allowing him to plead his complaint generally at the outset and to “fill in the blanks” following discovery.

The issue of whether to relax Rule 9(b)'s pleading requirements for complaints brought under the FCA [False Claims Act] and to permit early discovery is one of first impression in this circuit. . . . We join the more recent decisions and therefore reject Dr. Joshi's request to permit discovery to satisfy Rule 9(b). . . .


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