On Nov. 4, 2011, the D. C. Circuit decided United States ex rel. Batiste v. SLM Corp., 659 F.3d 1204 (D.C. Cir. 2011), holding for the first time that a previously filed complaint need not meet the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 9(b) to bar a similar, later-filed complaint under the first-to-file provision of the False Claims Act (FCA). Id. at 1210.
Relator Sheldon Batiste, a former employee of a subsidiary of defendant SLM Corp., filed a complaint as a qui tam relator under the FCA alleging the defendant had defrauded the U.S. government by presenting claims for funds which included false certifications. Id. at 1206.