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False Claims Act: 2015 Year in Review

Speaker(s): Jeremy D. Kernodle, Sean McKenna
Recorded on: Jan. 27, 2016
PLI Program #: 170322

Sean McKenna focuses his practice on healthcare enforcement and regulatory issues, representing individuals and providers under civil or administrative investigation by the Department of Justice, Offices of Inspector General, and Attorneys’ General Medicaid Fraud Control Units, as well as in criminal investigations and matters involving the United States and State Attorneys General. As a former ten-year Assistant United States Attorney, Associate Counsel to the Inspector General and General Counsel for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Sean focuses his practice on matters involving the health care industry and regularly represents clients before Medicare, Medicaid and commercial contractors. Sean’s work includes assisting clients with internal investigations and compliance reviews, as well as advising on compliance with state and federal fraud and abuse rules. He is a frequent invited speaker at national, regional, and local conference.

Areas of Concentration

  • Healthcare litigation and regulatory issues
  • Fraud enforcement
  • False Claims Act/Qui tam
  • Criminal and white collar matters including fraud, money laundering, kickbacks, and forfeiture

Professional & Community Involvement

  • Adjunct Professor, Health Care Law, University of North Texas Dallas College of Law, 2015
  • State Bar of Texas
    • Council Member, Health Law Section, June 2013-Present
  • American Bar Association
    • Vice-Chair, Membership Committee, Health Law Section, 2013 - Present
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation, 2014-2015
  • Member, Criminal Justice Act Voluntary Panel, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas
  • Member, Knights of Columbus

Awards & Recognition

  • Listed, Chambers USA Guide, 2016
  • Recognized, Best Lawyers of Dallas, D Magazine, 2015
  • Recognized, The Best Lawyers in America, Litigation - Healthcare, 2015-2016
  • Recipient, FBI Commendation, August 2013
  • Recipient, DOL-EBSA Certificate of Appreciation, April 2013
  • Recipient, HHS-OIG, Integrity Award, 2013
  • Recipient, HHS-OIG, Integrity Award, 2011
  • Recipient, USPS-OIG, Award, June 2010
  • Recipient, HHS-OIG, Integrity Award, 2008
  • Recipient, USDA-OIG, Certificate of Appreciation, June 2008
  • Recipient, HHS-OIG, Integrity Award, 2004
  • Recipient, HHS-OIG, Exceptional Achievement Award, 2003


  • Health & FDA Business
  • Life Sciences & Medical Technology


  • J.D., University of Houston Law Center, 1998 
  • B.A., University of California at Santa Barbara, 1995

Admitted to Practice

  • Texas
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas

Jeremy Kernodle is a litigator who focuses on government litigation and appeals. He has successfully litigated cases against various federal agencies, including bid protests in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. His experience covers a range of substantive legal areas, including healthcare, False Claims Act claims, constitutional and administrative law, and government contract disputes.

Before joining Haynes and Boone, Jeremy served as an attorney-adviser in the Office of Legal Counsel at the U.S. Department of Justice, where he was among a small number of lawyers advising the White House and other senior Executive Branch officials on constitutional and other significant legal issues. He previously worked at Covington & Burling in Washington, D.C., and served as a law clerk to the Honorable Gerald B. Tjoflat of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

A recognized leader, Jeremy is the Immediate Past-President of the Federal Bar Association, Dallas Chapter, and is the President of the local chapter of the Federalist Society. He was named a Rising Star in appellate litigation in Texas in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, and a Leading Appellate Practitioner in the Fifth Circuit by Benchmark Litigation in 2011-2013.

Representative Matters

  • Representing national diagnostics laboratory in False Claims Act litigation (ongoing).
  • Representing defense contractor in claim against the United States (ongoing).
  • Persuaded Fifth Circuit to affirm summary judgment dismissing stock option backdating case brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission (5th Cir. 2012).
  • Persuaded Fifth Circuit to affirm the dismissal of two lawsuits against Central American clients brought by American manufacturer Mars, Inc. (5th Cir. 2012).
  • Won summary dismissal of False Claims Act suit against defense contractor client. (N.D. Tex. 2012).
  • Advised health care provider in dispute against state-owned hospital system regarding multi-million dollar government contract.
Selected Publications / Speaking Engagements
  • Co-author, "Year in Review, False Claims Act, 2013" (January 2014)
  • Speaker, "Recent Developments in False Claims Act Litigation," Dallas Bar Association Health Law Section (January 2014)
  • Co-author with Odean Volker and Nicole Somerville, "Are You Afraid of the False Claims Act? You Should Be," Houston Business Journal (August 2013)
  • Panelist, "Advice & Tips for Practicing in the Northern District of Texas" (January 2012)
  • Panelist, "The Rise in Whistleblower Liability" (June 2011)

Professional Recognition

  • Named a Fifth Circuit Litigation Star in Texas in Benchmark Appellate (2012-2013)
  • Named a Leading Appellate Practitioner in the Fifth Circuit by Benchmark Litigation (2011)
  • Selected for inclusion in Texas Super Lawyers - Rising Stars Edition (2010-2013)
Professional Leadership
  • Federalist Society, Dallas Chapter, President (present)
  • Federal Bar Association, Dallas Chapter, President (2012-2013)
  • Federal Bar Association, Government Contracts Section
  • Dallas Bar Association, Appellate Section
  • State Bar of Texas, Appellate Section
  • Bar Association of the Fifth Circuit
  • Patrick E. Higginbotham Inn of Court, Associate (2008)
Areas of Practice
  • Appellate
  • Litigation/Trial Practice
  • Government Contracts
  • Government Contracts Disputes
  • False Claims Act/Qui Tam
  • Healthcare
  • Fraud, Abuse, and Compliance
  • J.D., Vanderbilt University Law School, 2001, Founder's Medal (for graduating first in class); Order of the Coif; Articles Editor, Vanderbilt Law Review; Morgan Prize for best student Note
  • B.A., Harding University, 1998, summa cum laude
  • B.B.A., Harding University, 1998

Bar Admissions

  • Texas, 2001
  • District of Columbia, 2002

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Texas Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas

Judicial Clerkships

  • The Honorable Gerald B. Tjoflat, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit