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United States ex rel. Heyes v. Allstate Insurance Co.

United States Court of Appeals, Second Circuit

April 4, 2017

United States of America, ex rel. J. Michael Hayes, Plaintiff-Appellant,
v.
Allstate Insurance Company, Daimler Chrysler Insurance Company, Erie Insurance Company of New York, Erie Insurance Exchange, Inc., Erie Indemnity Company, Farmers Insurance Exchange, Truck Insurance Exchange, Fire Insurance Exchange, Foremost Insurance Group, Geico, Insurance, GMAC Insurance, Kemper Independence Insurance Company, Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, Liberty Mutual Group, Liberty Mutual Holding Company, Inc., Metropolitan Group Property and Casualty Insurance Company, Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Company, Nationwide General Insurance Company, Nationwide Financial Services Incorporated, Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, New York Central Mutual Fire Insurance Company, Preferred Mutual Insurance Company, Progressive Insurance Company, The Progressive Corporation, Inc., Republic - Franklin Insurance Company, Utica Mutual Insurance Company, Graphics Arts Mutual Insurance Company, Utica National Insurance Company of Texas, Utica National Insurance Company of Ohio, Utica National Assurance Company, Utica Lloyd's of Texas, Utica Specialty Risk Insurance Company, Founders Insurance Company, Founders Insurance Company of Michigan, Utica National Insurance Group, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc., Travelers Insurance Group Holding, Inc., Travelers Property Casualty Corporation, The Travelers Companies, Inc., Zurich North America, Fedex Corporation, Fedex Express, Fedex Ground, Fedex Freight, Fedex Office, Fedex Custom Critical, Fedex Trade Networks, Fedex Supply Chain Solutions, Fedex Services, J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Incorporated, U-Haul International, and The Erie Insurance Company, Defendants-Appellees, Allstate Corporation, CastlePoint National Insurance Company, Specialty Underwriters Alliance, Inc., Tower Group Companies, Maiden Holding LTD, Kemper Corporation, Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company, Nationwide Corporation, New York State Insurance Reciprocal, The Prudential Insurance Company of America, Prudential Financial, Inc., Heartland Express, Incorporated, Nationwide, Farmers Insurance Group Companies, Farmers Underwriters Association, AIG, Berkshire Hathaway Inc., Nationwide Mutual Insurance Intercompany Pool, Nationwide, Zurich Financial Services AG, and Zurich Insurance Group AG, Defendants.

          Argued: March 2, 2017

         Relator J. Michael Hayes brought this qui tam action under the False Claims Act ("FCA"), 31 U.S.C. § 3729 et seq., against numerous insurance and trucking companies. The United States District Court for the Western District of New York (Skretny, J.) dismissed the action with prejudice as to Hayes as a sanction under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11. On appeal, Hayes primarily challenges the imposition of the sanction of dismissal. Several of the defendants urge us to affirm the district court's judgment on the alternative ground that the district court lacked subject matter jurisdiction over Hayes's FCA claims, which according to these defendants did not satisfy the statute's first-to-file rule. We join the D.C. Circuit in holding that the FCA's first-to-file rule is not jurisdictional. Accordingly, we need not consider the defendants' arguments on that issue. For the reasons stated herein and in the accompanying summary order discussing the district court's imposition of the sanction of dismissal, the judgment of the district court is AFFIRMED.

          J. Michael Hayes (Peter M. Jasen, Buffalo, NY, on the brief), for Plaintiff-Appellant.

          John W. Campbell, Federal Express Corporation, Memphis, TN, for Defendants-Appellees FedEx Corporation, Federal Express Corporation, FedEx Ground Package System Inc., FedEx Freight Corporation, FedEx Office and Print Services, Inc., FedEx Custom Critical, Inc., FedEx Trade Networks Inc., FedEx Supply Chain Systems, Inc., and FedEx Corporate Services, Inc.

          David L. Yohai (Lori L. Pines and John P. Mastando III, on the brief), Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, New York, NY, for Defendants- Appellees Farmers Insurance Exchange, Truck Insurance Exchange, Fire Insurance Exchange, and Foremost Property and Casualty Insurance Company.

          Bryce L. Friedman, Simpson Thatcher & Bartlett LLP, New York, NY; Deborah L. Stein, Simpson Thatcher & Bartlett LLP, Los Angeles, CA, for Defendants-Appellees Travelers Insurance Group Holding, Inc., Travelers Property Casualty Corporation, and The Travelers Companies, Inc.

          Jonathan M. Freiman, Wiggin and Dana LLP, New Haven, CT, for Defendant-Appellee Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc.

          Sharon Angelino, Goldberg Segalla LLP, Buffalo, NY, for Defendants- Appellees J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc., Founders Insurance Company, Founders Insurance Company of Michigan, Graphic Arts Mutual Insurance Company, Republic-Franklin Insurance Company, Utica Mutual Insurance Company, Utica National Insurance Company of Texas, Utica National Insurance Company of Ohio, Utica National Assurance Company, Utica Lloyd's of Texas, Utica Specialty Risk Insurance Company, and Utica National Insurance Group.

          Heath J. Szymczak, Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC, Buffalo, NY, for Defendants-Appellees Erie Insurance Company of New York, Erie Insurance Exchange, Inc., Erie Indemnity Company, and The Erie Insurance Company.

          Steven M. Levy and Alan S. Gilbert, Dentons U.S. LLP, Chicago IL; Sean C. Cenawood, Dentons U.S. LLP, New York, NY; Sharon Angelino, Goldberg Segalla LLP, Buffalo, NY, for Defendants- Appellees Allstate Insurance Company, Allstate Indemnity Company, Kemper Independence Insurance Company, Metropolitan Group Property and Casualty Insurance Company, Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Company; and Defendants Kemper Corporation and The Allstate Corporation.

          Suzanne O. Galbato, Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC, Syracuse, NY, for Defendant-Appellee Preferred Mutual Insurance Company.

          Terrance M. Connors, Connors LLP, Buffalo, NY; Michael K. Loucks, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, Boston, MA, for Defendants-Appellees Progressive Insurance Company and The Progressive Corporation, Inc.

          Douglas W. Baruch and Anayansi Rodriquez Carbo, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP, Washington, D.C.; Dan David Kohane, Hurwitz & Fine, P.C., Buffalo, NY, for Defendant- Appellee State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company.

          Michael J. Willett, Gibson, McAskill & Crosby, LLP, Buffalo, NY, for Defendant-Appellee Zurich North America.

          Stephen Sozio, Jones Day, Cleveland, OH; Matthew Corcoran, Jones Day, Columbus, OH; Mark C. Davis, Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman LLP, Buffalo, NY, for Defendants-Appellees Nationwide General Insurance Company, Nationwide Financial ...


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