FCA Legislative History and Background

Originally signed into law by President Abraham Lincoln on March 2, 1863, the False Claims Act is currently America’s most effective whistleblower protection and awards law. The False Claims Act targets fraud against the taxpayers, and has resulted in billions of dollars in recoveries from Medicaid and Medicare fraud, defense contractor fraud, banking fraud and other schemes to improperly obtain federal tax dollars.

Based on the success of the False Claims Act, numerous states, including New York, California, Georgia and the District of Columbia has passed state versions of the False Claims Act.

The Whistleblower’s Handbook, in Rules 2 and 6 and Checklists 1 and 4 provide a comprehensive summary of how the False Claims Act works, and lists all of the 26 states and local jurisdictions that have duplicated the Federal False Claims Act.

1986 False Claims Act Reform

1986 False Claims Act text.

1986 Legislative History

Senate Proceedings

Senate Bill introduced November 6th, 1979

November 19th, 1979 Improvements in Judicial Machinery Subcommittee Report

March 4th, 1980 Judiciary Committee Report

Senator Grassley’s remarks on the FCA, August 1st, 1985

Senate Bill Reported with Amendment August 1st, 1985

September 17th 1985, Administrative Practice and Procedure Report

Senate Bill introduced September 20, 1985

October 1st, 1985 Administrative Practice and Procedure Subcommittee Report Part 1Part 2

September 17, 1985 Administrative Practice and Procedure Subcommittee Report Part 1Part 2

October 3rd, 1985 Senate Debate

June 17th, 1986 Judiciary Committee Hearing Part 1, Part 2Part 3

July 28th, 1986 Judiciary Committee Report

August 11th, 1986 Senate Debate

House Proceedings

House Bill introduced April 29 1985

February 5th and 6th, 1986 Administrative Law and Governmental Relations Subcommittee Report Part 1,Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5

June 26, 1986 Judiciary Committee report

House Bill reported with Amendment June 26, 1986

House Bill referred to Judiciary Committee

September 9th, 1986 House Debate

October 7th, 1986 House Debate

Reports from the 1986 Legislative History

Economic Crime Council’s 1985 report on the False Claims Act

Merit Systems Protection Board’s 1984 report on the False Claims Act Part 1Part 2


False Claims Act Correction Act of 2007

December 19, 2007 Bill introduced

False Claims Act Correction Act of 2008

September 12, 2007 Bill introduced

September 25th, 2008 Senate Report

False Claims Act Correction Act of 2009

March 30th, 2009 Bill introduced

Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act of 2009

Text of the Act

Senate Report

Historical Versions of the False Claims Act

Original 1863 FCA

1863 Legislative History

1943 Amended FCA

Additional Reports and Hearings

The National Whistleblower Center’s Report, Saving America’s “Most Important tool to Uncover and Punish Fraud”

The Department of Justice’s Statistics on Fraud Recoveries from the False Claims Act.

Hearing Before the Subcommittee on Improvements in Judicial Machinery of the Committee on the Judiciary, United States Senate (November 19, 1979)