Katherine Lauer is a partner in the San Diego office of Latham & Watkins, and is a global Co-chair of the firm's Healthcare & Life Sciences Practice. Ms. Lauer focuses her practice on healthcare litigation, with emphasis on healthcare fraud defense. She has defended some of the country's largest and most high-profile civil and criminal government healthcare fraud investigations and qui tam cases, representing such clients as HCA, Tenet Healthcare, Catholic Healthcare West and University Hospitals Health System of Cleveland. In 2012 and 2015, she was selected as a “Life Science Star” by LMG Life Sciences, a list of highest profile, most sought-after and best lawyers working in life sciences. In 2011, she was named to the BTI Client Service All Star Team for her work in healthcare litigation. Ms. Lauer has repeatedly been recognized by Nightingale's Healthcare News as one of the country's top healthcare attorneys – in 2004 as an "Outstanding Fraud and Compliance Lawyer" and in 2006 and 2008 as an “Outstanding Healthcare Litigator.”
Ms. Lauer has extensive experience in the federal Anti-kickback Statute, the Stark Laws and the federal False Claims Act, as well as cost reporting and other reimbursement issues. She advises a wide array of healthcare industry clients on issues related to pharmaceutical and medical device marketing, the structure and formation of joint ventures and other corporate transactions, including mergers and acquisitions. She also has particular expertise in the design and implementation of compliance programs, and has structured and conducted many internal investigations, voluntary disclosures and compliance audits.
Ms. Lauer is recognized by Chambers USA and The Legal 500 US for her work in healthcare.
She is the past Co-chair of the Health Law Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association Section of Litigation. She is a member of the American Health Lawyers Association, the Healthcare and Government Contracts section of the Federal Bar Association, and the California Society for Healthcare Attorneys, where she serves on the Publications Committee. She is a member of the Planning Committee of the ABA Annual National Institute on Healthcare Fraud, and has been selected by the Department of Justice to provide training to government attorneys on how to successfully resolve healthcare fraud investigations. Ms. Lauer is also a member of the Scripps Health Board of Trustees.
Ms. Lauer's experience includes representation of:
- HCA in national civil and criminal kickback and Stark Law investigations involving numerous qui tam actions and multiple United States Attorney’s offices; negotiated criminal plea and civil settlement
- HCA in the US$1.125 billion acquisition of HealthMidwest
- Tenet Healthcare Corporation in multiple civil and criminal kickback and Stark Law investigations where she successfully convinced prosecutors not to pursue criminal prosecution in connection with alleged illegal kickbacks and to decline intervention into several related qui tam actions
- Tenet Healthcare Corporation in US v. Weinbaum, the Alvarado Hospital criminal kickback trial
- Advocate Health Care in the acquisition of Condell Medical Center and the attendant voluntary disclosure resulting in a US$36 million settlement with the Department of Justice
- Catholic Healthcare West in system-wide cost report fraud investigation
- University Hospitals Health System of Cleveland in civil and criminal kickback and Stark Law investigations
- Defendants in multiple non-intervened False Claims Act actions pending throughout the United States
- Defendants in multiple False Claims Act investigations where she successfully persuaded the government not to intervene; matter was dismissed by relator
- Numerous clients in the negotiation of Corporate Integrity Agreement and advising on implementation and reporting to the Office of Inspector General
- Individual defendants in multiple criminal kickback and investigation and off-label promotion investigations
- Multiple clients in congressional investigation into hospital billing practices of uninsured patients
- Aetna Government Health Plans in multiple bid protest proceedings before the General Accounting Office and in federal court relating to CHAMPUS/TRICARE US$3.5 billion managed care contract award