If you’ve been charged with healthcare fraud, you’ll want to reach out to medical fraud lawyers in the state of Texas and find one to handle your case. A skilled attorney offers you the best chance at proving your innocence and avoiding serious consequences. Since a criminal record can have long-lasting repercussions on your life, you’ll want to take any accusation of medical fraud seriously.
Have You Been Accused of Medical Fraud? Find a Lawyer Today When you haven’t committed the crime you’ve been accused of, you may feel there’s no reason to seek the services of medical fraud lawyers in Texas. However, even if you are innocent, you shouldn’t overlook the benefits a lawyer can provide to your case. While most people may like to believe that the legal system is infallible, mistakes are often made, and being wrongfully convicted can have long-term negative consequences. Penalties for committing healthcare fraud can be as severe as losing your license to practice medicine and receiving a prison sentence. Hiring an attorney ensures that your rights are defended throughout the trial and that you have someone looking out for your best interests.
Medical Fraud Lawyers in Texas Will Defend Your Rights
Even if you believe there may be some validity to the charges brought against you, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to defend yourself. You must have a lawyer to represent you if you have
done anything that could constitute medical fraud. Without an experienced lawyer on your team, you risk facing more severe repercussions than your actions warrant or missing an opportunity to avoid conviction altogether. For example, sometimes your rights are violated during the arrest process, or evidence is collected illegally. If that happens during your case, you’ll want a lawyer working for you to prevent you from being treated unjustly and ensure improperly collected evidence is discarded. To learn more about medical fraud and how to defend yourself against charges, contact an attorney who is experienced in navigating white-collar crimes.
Understanding Medical Fraud
Medical fraud is also referred to as healthcare fraud, and it is a criminal action that both healthcare professionals and patients can perform. Essentially, if an individual lies or deceives someone to receive assets, benefits, or money that a healthcare benefits program owns or controls, they are committing healthcare fraud. To be convicted of medical fraud, the accusing party, which is usually the government, must prove the defendant completed the fraudulent action knowingly, intending to benefit from it financially. Healthcare fraud can be charged at the federal level and even be classified as a felony if offenders steal enough money.
Common Types of Medical Fraud
Various actions can constitute medical fraud, and you may be blamed for an activity you didn’t know was illegal. Doctors and patients can benefit from understanding healthcare fraud so that they are fully aware of any risks associated with their choices.
Falsifying a Diagnosis
One of the more common types of healthcare fraud involves falsifying diagnoses to receive more compensation from an insurer or medical benefits program. By manufacturing a false diagnosis, procedures that are unnecessary or did not occur can be justified to get a higher payment.
Misuse of Personal Information
A type of healthcare fraud patients often perform involves fraudulently using another individual’s personal information. An example would be using someone else’s name, social security number, address, and health information to receive care.
Billing for Services Rendered
Billing patients for services or procedures that never occurred is a prevalent type of healthcare fraud. Sometimes billing for unperformed services happens inadvertently, such as through a clerical
error; other times, it is done intentionally to steal money from patients and insurance companies. If you have been charged with healthcare fraud because of a discrepancy between the services you provided and your billing records, you’ll need to contact an attorney immediately. Your ability to prove your innocence or negotiate lighter repercussions will rely heavily on whether your legal counsel is skilled at practicing criminal defense law.
When healthcare providers receive financial kickbacks from specialists in exchange for referring patients to them, this can be considered medical fraud. While this may not seem unethical at first glance, accepting payment in exchange for patient referrals is a crime in Federal healthcare programs. This behavior is illegal because referral incentives increase the chance that a care provider might refer a patient to a specialist, not because they need the specialist’s expertise but because the primary physician wants a kickback. Paying for referrals can also lead to issues such as unfair competition and increased program costs.
Honest Mistakes Happen
With all the complicated requirements healthcare providers must meet, it’s easy for mistakes to occur. Unfortunately, these mistakes can often appear to be fraud, and you may find yourself being blamed for a crime when you simply made an error. However, proving an action deemed fraudulent was just a mistake will be challenging without a lawyer on your side. Since being convicted of healthcare fraud can have serious consequences, such as fines, loss of licensing, probation, and prison, you can’t afford to take a medical fraud charge lightly. The sooner you seek legal representation, the sooner your attorney can ensure your rights are not violated and begin working toward proving your innocence or mitigating the adverse effects of a conviction.
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