Many situations can arise that have immediate and long-lasting adverse effects on a person's private and/or business reputation. Being accused of a crime at the state or federal level in Pennsylvania is high on the list. Merely being suspected of fraud is enough to damage a person's good standing in a community. However, allegations do not constitute guilt, and every person has the right to fight against such charges in court.
One woman was previously employed as the head of a hospice facility in Pittsburgh. She is alleged to have submitted false Medicare and Medicaid billings to collect millions of dollars. In 2015, she was indicted for lying to a federal grand jury and committing health care fraud.
The woman initially pleaded not guilty in federal court in Pittsburgh but is reportedly scheduled to change that to a guilty plea. Of the four grand jury counts against her, one was dismissed. Authorities say she used non-terminally ill patients as the means for filing the false claims.
There are various reasons why an accused individual may ultimately decide to enter a guilty plea. Every fraud case is different, however, and anyone suspected in a similar Pennsylvania investigation may want to retain aggressive legal representation to increase the chances of obtaining a positive outcome in court. An attorney understands all that is at stake when facing formal charges that carry potentially severe penalties under conviction. There are a number of things an attorney can do to minimize the negative impact a situation may have on one's future.
Source: lancasteronline.com, "Ex-hospice head set to plead to Medicare, Medicaid fraud", June 2, 2016