Federal prosecutors recently filed a civil lawsuit against State Senator Steve Dickerson and another founder of Comprehensive Pain Specialists, with its head office based in another state. The company, also known as CPS, is accused of defrauding taxpayers and the government, and it is not yet clear whether criminal charges for white collar crimes will follow. Until the company abruptly closed down last summer, it operated 60 clinics across the country, some of which were in Michigan. Along with the two founders, the CPS CEO is also a defendant in the lawsuit. The claim alleges that at least 600 urine tests were done every day, most of which were unnecessary and purely done for profit -- from that came the name of "Liquid Gold."
The complaint states that comprehensive tests, called qualitative tests, are typically done for new patients. Analysis of the urine samples will then show whether they are perhaps already taking other powerful drugs or opioids. Followup tests that are cheaper and do not require laboratory analysis are then done to test for single drugs at a time. However, prosecutors allege that CPS repeated the qualitative tests with every visit, and then filed thousands of fraudulent claims with federal and state-funded medical aid programs.
Further allegations state that employees were motivated by offers of financial incentives to do more qualitative tests. This was to boost profits, although it is alleged that the results of most of the urine samples were never even checked. The complaint alleges that many of the decisions about prescribing opioids to patients were not based on the results of urine tests.
Currently, only civil charges were filed in pursuit of recovering $50 million in damages, and it is unclear whether criminal charges for white collar crimes will follow. However, anyone in Michigan who becomes aware of an investigation will want to retain the services of an attorney who has extensive experience in this challenging field of the law. There is a lot at stake, and having the support of legal counsel in anticipation of criminal charges can increase the chances of achieving the best possible outcome.