Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Reported to Senate amended (12/10/1985)

(Reported to Senate from the Committee on Governmental Affairs with amendment, S. Rept. 99-212)

Program Fraud Civil Remedies Act of 1985 - Establishes penalties and assessments to be imposed against any person who knowingly makes a false claim or statement to: (1) an authority of the United States; (2) a recipient of property, services, or money from such authority; or (3) a party to a contract with such authority; or (4) an authority which has the effect of decreasing an obligation to pay or account for property, service, or money. Directs that such penalties and assessments are in addition to criminal and civil penalties and assessments provided by other laws.

Directs the investigating official of a Federal authority to investigate allegations that a person made a false claim or statement and to report findings to the reviewing official designated for that authority. Directs the reviewing official to refer such allegations to a hearing examiner for that authority upon determining there is adequate evidence to believe that the person is liable for a penalty or assessment.

Requires the reviewing official, prior to notifying the hearing examiner, to notify the Attorney General of any intention to refer such allegations to a hearing examiner. Allows the reviewing official to refer such allegations to a hearing examiner if Attorney General approves the referral or does not disapprove it within 90 days.

Prohibits the referral of allegations to a hearing examiner if the Attorney General transmits a statement to such effect. Authorizes the Attorney General, by written statement, to stay any hearing already in progress if such hearing adversely affects a pending or potential civil action related to a fraudulent claim.

Prohibits the referral of allegations to a hearing examiner when a fraudulent claim exceeds $100,000.

Specifies the authority of the investigating official and the official conducting the hearing, and the procedure for judicial review of the determination reached in the hearing.

Authorizes the Attorney General to commence a civil action to recover a penalty or assessment determined by such a hearing. Authorizes the authority head to settle a final penalty or assessment determined by hearing. Grants the Attorney General exclusive authority to settle a claim subject to judicial review or collection procedures.

Authorizes the deduction from any sum owed to a person by the United States, except Federal tax refunds, the amount of any penalty or assessment owed by that person to the United States.

Specifies time limitations for commencing a hearing concerning a false statement or claim and for commencing an action to recover any penalty or assessment.

Requires each authority head to report annually to the appropriate Congressional committees on actions taken under this Act during the most recent 12-month period ending September 30.