2011 Louisiana Laws
TITLE 39 — Public finance
RS 39:2158 — Qui tam action procedures
§2158. Qui tam action procedures
A. The following procedures shall be applicable to a qui tam action:
(1) The complaint shall be captioned: "Hurricane Relief Programs Ex Rel.: [insert name of qui tam plaintiff(s)] v. [insert name of defendant(s)]".
(2)(a) A copy of the qui tam complaint and written disclosure of substantially all material evidence and information each qui tam plaintiff possesses shall be filed with the attorney general.
(b) The qui tam complaint and written disclosure of substantially all material evidence and information shall be filed with the attorney general within one year of the date the qui tam plaintiff knew or should have known of the information forming the basis of the complaint. No qui tam action shall be instituted by a qui tam plaintiff if he fails to timely file a complaint with the attorney general.
(3)(a) At least thirty days after filing with the attorney general, the qui tam complaint and information may be filed with the appropriate state district court. On the same date as the qui tam action is filed, the qui tam plaintiff shall serve the attorney general with notice of the filing.
(b) If more than one qui tam action arising out of the same information and allegations is filed, the court shall dismiss all qui tam actions where the complaint and information filed with the attorney general were filed thirty days or more after the first qui tam complaint and information which serve as the basis for the alleged violation were filed with the attorney general.
(4)(a) The complaint and information filed with the court shall be made under seal, shall remain under seal for at least ninety days from the date of filing, and shall be served on the defendant when the seal is removed.
(b) For good cause shown, the attorney general may request one extension of the ninety-day time period for the complaint and information to remain under seal and unserved on the defendant. This request shall be supported by affidavit or other submission in camera and under seal.
B.(1) If the attorney general elects to intervene in the action, the attorney general shall not be bound by any act of a qui tam plaintiff. The attorney general shall control the qui tam action proceedings on behalf of the state and the qui tam plaintiff may continue as a party to the action.
(2) The qui tam plaintiff and his counsel shall cooperate fully with the attorney general during the pendency of the qui tam action.
(3) If requested by the attorney general and notwithstanding the objection of the qui tam plaintiff, the court may dismiss the qui tam action provided the qui tam plaintiff has been notified by the attorney general of the filing of the motion to dismiss and the court has provided the qui tam plaintiff a contradictory hearing on the motion.
(4) If the attorney general does not intervene, the qui tam plaintiff may proceed with the qui tam action unless the attorney general shows that proceeding would adversely affect the prosecution of any pending criminal actions or criminal investigations into the activities of the defendant. Such a showing shall be made to the court in camera and neither the qui tam plaintiff or the defendant shall be informed of the information revealed in camera. In which case, the qui tam action shall be stayed for no more than one year.
(5) If the qui tam plaintiff objects to a settlement of the qui tam action proposed by the attorney general, the court may authorize the settlement only after a hearing to determine whether the proposed settlement is fair, adequate, and reasonable under the circumstances.
C. If a qui tam plaintiff fails to comply with any provision of this Chapter, after a contradictory hearing, the court may dismiss the qui tam plaintiff on its own motion or on motion made by the attorney general.
D. A defendant shall have thirty days from the time a qui tam complaint is served on him to file a responsive pleading.
E. The qui tam plaintiff and the defendant shall serve all pleadings and papers filed, as well as discovery, in the qui tam action on the attorney general.
F.(1) Whether or not the attorney general proceeds with the action, upon showing by the attorney general that certain actions of discovery by the qui tam plaintiff or defendant would interfere with a criminal or civil investigation or proceeding arising out of the same facts, the court shall stay the discovery for a period of not more than ninety days.
(2) Upon a further showing that federal or state authorities have pursued the criminal or civil investigation or proceeding with reasonable diligence and any proposed discovery in the qui tam action would unduly interfere with the criminal or civil investigation or proceeding, the court may stay the discovery for an additional period, not to exceed one year.
(3) Such showings shall be conducted in camera and neither the defendant nor the qui tam plaintiff shall be informed of the information presented to the court.
(4) If discovery is stayed pursuant to this Subsection, the trial and any motion for summary judgment in the qui tam action shall likewise be stayed.
Acts 2006, No. 479, §1, eff. June 22, 2006.
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