Frequently Asked Questions

Basic Information

  1. What is this case about?

    Defendant Farid Fata (hereinafter, “the defendant”), a hematologist-oncologist, pleaded guilty to health care fraud, money laundering, and conspiracy to pay or receive kickbacks. As part of the defendant’s scheme, he deliberately administered medically unnecessary injections and infusions to patients, including chemotherapy, iron, cancer treatment drugs, and other medications. He also administered unnecessary diagnostic tests involving the injection of radiological material into patients. U.S. District Judge Paul D. Borman imposed a sentence of 45 years in prison and ordered the defendant to forfeit assets.

    This claim process is the only opportunity patients will have to provide documentation for certain losses. The allowable losses are costs associated with medical services prescribed or performed by the defendant from April 11, 2005 through August 6, 2013 and remedial medical, dental, and mental health services performed up to and including September 6, 2016 to compensate for remedial treatments needed in response to the defendant’s inappropriate or unnecessary procedures. The claims process also allows family members of patients to seek reimbursement for a portion of patients’ funeral costs.

    Back To Top
  2. Where does the money come from?

    The money generally comes from a fund made up of the net proceeds from liquidating the defendant’s assets.

    Back To Top
  3. Do I have a lawyer in this case? Do I need a lawyer in this case?

    You do not have a lawyer in this case unless you hired a lawyer on your own. The Department of Justice represents the United States of America.

    The process does not require a lawyer. However, the Office of the Claims Facilitator cannot give you legal advice about whether you should or should not retain a lawyer to assist you in this process.

    Back To Top
  4. Are lawyers or administrators being paid from the victims’ fund?

    No. The lawyers at the Department of Justice and the Claims Facilitator and her staff are not being paid out of the victims’ fund.

    Back To Top
  5. Would I give up rights if I participate in this process, and could I still be part of a lawsuit against the defendant?

    You do not have to give up a civil lawsuit or waive participation in any other kind of compensation process as a condition for being in this claims process. However, you will have an obligation to report in this process any amounts that you recover elsewhere that relate to losses claimed in this process.

    Back To Top
  6. What does it mean to swear under penalty of perjury?

    This means that you are swearing that you are telling the truth during this process. If any of your answers are knowingly untruthful, you can be prosecuted for the crime of perjury.

    Back To Top

Filing A Claim

  1. Who can file a claim?

    The Claim filing deadline was November 14, 2016. No further claims are being accepted. There were 3 possible types of Claimants.

    1. Victims:
      People who were patients of the defendant could file a claim if they had eligible out-of-pocket losses. (see FAQ 8 below.)
    2. Representatives:
      Legal representatives of patients who are minors and/or who are incapacitated could file on the patient’s behalf. They were required to submit documentation of their representative status, such as guardianship papers or a power of attorney.
    3. Heirs:
      Claims could be filed on behalf of the estates of deceased victims. Such Claimants will be required to provide documentation of their representation of the estate.
    Back To Top
  2. What types of claims are eligible for payment?

    The general rules for claim eligibility are based on the fact that this is a criminal restitution process. Restitution is the technical term that describes a process governed by federal law to pay victims for some of the losses they suffered from a crime. Restitution rules apply to cases like this—cases in which the government seizes a convicted criminal’s assets and sets up a process for distributing those assets to victims of the crime who can provide documentation of certain kinds of economic losses.

    It is fortunate that the Department of Justice has money to distribute and the Court has authorized the payment of restitution in this case. However, restitution has many detailed requirements and does not cover every type of loss.

    Only certain kinds of out-of-pocket costs can be claimed in this process.

    Losses that are eligible for payment in this process are:

    1. Money paid for treatments prescribed by the defendant, treatments and services ordered by the defendant, and prescriptions prescribed by the defendant;
    2. Money paid for remedial medical and dental treatments through September 6, 2016 to remedy the effects of the defendant’s treatments and what the defendant ordered;
    3. Money paid for mental health remedial treatments through September 6, 2016 to remedy mental health issues related to the defendant’s treatments; and
    4. Money paid by patients’ family members for victims’ funerals. (Please note that it is likely that the claims process will be able to pay for only a portion of the eligible funeral expenses.)

    Victims who have no out-of-pocket costs in the categories listed above were advised not to submit a claim in this process.

    This is a restitution process within a criminal case; many categories of loss that are commonly paid in civil cases cannot be paid in this process.

    Losses that are not eligible for payment in this process are:

    1. pain and suffering;
    2. lost wages;
    3. attorneys’ fees; or
    4. travel to obtain medical treatment.

    We understand this will be very disappointing to many people. These are the rules Congress has set down that we must follow.

    The United States Congress set the basic rules in the restitution statutes. The Court set further rules for this case in an order issued on April 11, 2016. If you would like to see the Order issued by the Court, please visit the United States Attorney’s Office for the E.D. of Michigan U.S. v. Farid Fata webpage at www.justice.gov/usao-edmi/us-v-farid-fata-court-docket-13-cr-20600.

    If you have additional questions or concerns about this process, you can contact the Fata Claims Facilitator phone staff at 1-877-202-3282, or call the Victim Witness Coordinator for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan, Sandy Palazzolo, at 1-313-226-9633. If you have specific questions about the claims process, please call the phone staff at 1-877-202-3282. Please be advised that Ms. Palazzolo will not be able to provide assistance in the claims process.

    Back To Top
  3. Can one file a claim for remedial treatment for past treatments? Current treatments?

    Both were eligible to be claimed, however, the claim filing deadline has past. Any claims filed after November 14, 2016 but before November 21, 2017, were set aside, and the Court was asked to determine how they would be handled. The Court’s ruling about those late claims is here. Claims received on or after November 21, 2017 will not be accepted for processing.

    Back To Top
  4. What is the deadline to file a claim?

    The claim filing deadline was November 14, 2016 and has now passed. Any claims filed after November 14, 2016 were set aside, and the Court was asked to determine how they should be handled. The Court’s ruling about those late claims is here. Claims received after on or after November 21, 2017 will not be accepted for processing.

    Back To Top
  5. Is there a cost to file?

    There was no cost to file a claim. The claim filing deadline was November 14, 2016. Any claims filed after November 14, 2016 were set aside, and the Court was asked to determine how they should be handled. The Court’s ruling about those late claims is here. Claims received after on or after November 21, 2017 will not be accepted for processing.

    Back To Top
  6. How do I prove what I paid and/or owed?

    This claims process required that for each out-of-pocket expense, the claimant must have either:

    1. Provided proof of the amount that the claimant paid; or
    2. Provided proof of the amount that the claimant owed, and sworn under oath that the claimant paid that bill.

    Click here to look at some possibilities for the eligible expenses.

    Back To Top
  7. Is there an easier way to fill out the tables on the Claim Form?

    To address the concern that claimants had too many entries to write into the 3 tables in the Claim Form (on pages 5, 8, and 11 of the Claim Form), we offered an alternative, slightly streamlined way of completing the tables in the Claim Form. Click here to read the Listing Multiple Expenses document.

    Back To Top
  8. Can someone help me file?

    The claim filing deadline was November 14, 2016. There is no longer any assistance available for filing claims.

    Back To Top
  9. What is the process for learning about errors in my claim form, and fixing those errors?

    The deadline for fixing Claim Form errors has now passed.

    Back To Top

Getting A Payment

  1. How will claims be decided?

    The Claims Facilitator, Randi Ilyse Roth, made recommendations to the Court as to the amount of restitution that each timely-filed claim is entitled to receive according to the rules of the case. She and her staff examined whether each claim requested categories of compensation that are eligible in this claim process, and whether each claim provided proper documentation. Then the Court will make a decision based, in part, on the Facilitator’s recommendations.

    Back To Top
  2. What happens if I submitted my claim or response to a request for additional information late?

    The time to file claims is now closed. The deadline was November 14, 2016 pursuant to a court order. Any claims filed after November 14, 2016 were set aside, and the Court was asked to determine how they should be handled. The Court’s ruling about those late claims is here. Claims received after on or after November 21, 2017 will not be accepted for processing.

    Additionally, the time to submit requested information to correct identified errors in claim forms has now passed.

    Claims and any claim form corrections received on or after November 21, 2017 will not be accepted for processing.

    Back To Top
  3. When will I receive my decision letter?

    Preliminary Decision Letters were mailed between July 24 and July 25, 2017, and reconsideration requests have been reviewed.

    Final Determination Letters were mailed on November 3, 2017. If you submitted a claim and you did not receive your Final Determination Letter, please call 1-877-202-3282 for more information.

    Back To Top
  4. Is the Facilitator’s decision final?

    The Court makes the final decision based on the Facilitator’s recommendations.

    Back To Top
  5. What happens if I don’t agree with the Facilitator’s decision?

    The Final Determination letter explains that if you don’t agree with the Facilitator’s recommendation, you may seek a Court Review by December 11, 2017. You must use the specific Court Review form found here and mail it directly to the Court at the following address, postmarked by December 11, 2017:

    Clerk of the Court
    Attn: U.S. v. Fata Restitution Claims
    231 W. Lafayette Blvd.
    Theodore Levin U.S. Courthouse
    Detroit, MI 48226

    Back To Top
  6. What happens if I do not file a Claim?

    If you did not file any claim in this case you will not recover any money in this case.

    Back To Top
  7. How much money will I get, and when will I be paid?

    The amount you may get paid depends both on the details of your claim submission and on whether the total amount of eligible claims exceeds the amount of money in the restitution fund.

    Back To Top

Information About The Claims Package

  1. Where can I find definitions of technical terms in the Claims Package?

    A list of definitions of terms used in this claims process is included in the Claim Package. You can download a PDF copy of the Definitions of Terms used in this claims process here.

    Back To Top
  2. What is the significance of the dates listed in the Claims Package?
    KEY DATES:
    April 11, 2005 This is the date when the defendant started his practice at Michigan Hematology Oncology (“MHO”).
    August 6, 2013 This is the date when the defendant was arrested.
    September 6, 2016 This is the last date of remedial treatment that can be submitted for compensation in this claims process.
    November 14, 2016 This is the deadline for filing a claim

    Back To Top

Information About Documentation

  1. What if I do not have records at home about my dates of treatment or the costs of my treatment?

    A chart containing information on how to contact Medicare and various private insurance companies for Explanation of Benefits or Medicare service notices can be found on the Medicare & Insurance Info page by clicking here.

    Back To Top
  2. Can the services of ophthalmologists and optometrists count as eligible remedial medical services?

    Yes, if they otherwise meet the requirements for eligibility.

    Back To Top
  3. What’s included in compensable mental health treatment?

    Mental health treatment can include treatments by a psychologist, psychiatrist, licensed therapist, or licensed social worker, and includes prescription medications that they prescribe.

    Back To Top

Tax Information

  1. Will it affect my taxes if I get paid in this case?

    The Claims Facilitator cannot give you legal or tax advice. You may wish to consult your tax advisor.

    Back To Top
  2. Will it affect my public benefits—like Social Security or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)—if I get paid in this case?

    The Claims Facilitator cannot give you advice regarding public benefits. You should contact your legal counsel or the agency providing the benefits.

    Back To Top

Hearing

  1. What is the purpose of the Court hearing? What will happen at that hearing? Can I attend the Court hearing?

    The hearing was held on November 21, 2017 in order to provide an update to the Court on this restitution process. Updates regarding the hearing are posted to the DOJ website for this case found here. The Court’s order following the November 21, 2017 hearing is here.

    Back To Top

Getting More Information

  1. How do I get help if I don’t understand something or if I have a concern?

    If you have any questions or concerns about this claims process, you can contact the Fata Claims Facilitator phone staff at 1-877-202-3282. Please be advised that Ms. Palazzolo will not be able to provide assistance in the claims process.

    Back To Top

Changing My Claim Information

  1. What if I file and then my address or phone number changes?

    Write to us to report the change of address. Send a letter with the information to:

    Fata Claims Facilitator
    PO Box 2730
    Portland, OR 97208-2730

    Back To Top

Preliminary Decisions

  1. What is the preliminary decision letter?

    The preliminary decision letter explained the Facilitator’s preliminary recommendation for your claim.

    Back To Top
  2. I don’t like the decision. I disagree with the decision and the Facilitator got it wrong. What can I do now?

    If you believed that the decision was wrong, you could have submitted a request for reconsideration postmarked on or before August 24. 2017. Some requests for reconsideration were received after August 24, 2017, but before November 21, 2017. The Court’s order regarding those requests is here. Requests for reconsideration received on or after November 21, 2017 will not be considered.

    Back To Top
  3. How long will the reconsideration process take, and how will I know whether my decision was changed?

    The Facilitator has completed the review of all timely reconsideration requests and all late reconsideration requests that were allowed by Court order. Final Determination letters mailed on November 3, 2017, which reflect updates to eligible recommended amounts made as a result of the reconsideration review process.

    Back To Top
  4. I filed a claim for an incapacitated person, a minor or a deceased patient. What documentation do I need to provide in order to receive a payment?

    We need you to provide documentation that you are authorized to represent that patient. This means that:

    • For an incapacitated person: please submit guardianship papers or power of attorney.
    • For a minor patient: please submit guardianship papers or a birth certificate identifying you as the parent.
    • For a deceased patient: please submit (1) letters testamentary, a small estate affidavit, or other court documentation identifying you as the legal representative of the Estate of the deceased patient AND (2) the Estate’s Taxpayer Identification Number (“EIN”).

    However, if you are the surviving spouse of a deceased patient, see FAQ 37.

    Back To Top

Legal Representation Documentation

  1. I am the surviving spouse of the deceased patient. Do I need to provide estate documentation?

    Yes, if you have the documentation, please send it in. However, if you don’t, then you only need to return a completed surviving spouse affidavit with a postmark date on or before August 24, 2017. Click here for that affidavit.

    Back To Top
  2. I am only seeking funeral expenses. Do I need to provide legal representation documents or a surviving spouse affidavit?

    If you are only seeking restitution of funeral expenses, then no, you do not need to provide legal rep documents or a surviving spouse affidavit.

    Back To Top
  3. Why do I need to provide this documentation?

    We need to ensure that any restitution that is approved is sent to the individual legally responsible for handling the deceased patient’s affairs. The categories of papers listed in FAQ 38 and FAQ 37 above are needed to provide that assurance.

    Back To Top
  4. By when do I need to provide this documentation and/or EIN?

    The documentation along with the EIN (if needed) was supposed to be submitted to us with a postmark date on or before August 24, 2017. However, we are still accepting this information.

    Back To Top
  5. What happens if I can’t get this documentation within the time period?

    If you can’t obtain the documentation by that time, then it is likely that the payment will be delayed.

    Back To Top
  6. Is the EIN the same as the patient’s SSN?

    No, the EIN and SSN are different numbers.

    Back To Top
  7. Where can I get the EIN?

    You can get the EIN from the IRS. There is no charge to get this number.

    Back To Top

Final Determinations

  1. Is the Final Determination my approved amount?

    The amount on your letter is the Facilitator’s final recommendation to the Court on what amounts are eligible for restitution. It will be up to the Court to approve the recommended amounts.

    Back To Top
  2. What if I ask for reconsideration but I am still not happy with the determination?

    The Final Determination letter explains that you must seek a Court Review by December 11, 2017. You must use the specific Court Review form found here and mail it directly to the Court at the following address:

    Clerk of the Court
    Attn: U.S. v. Fata Restitution Claims
    231 W. Lafayette Blvd.
    Theodore Levin U.S. Courthouse
    Detroit, MI 48226

    Back To Top
  3. When is the next Court hearing that will look at these determinations?

    The Court had a status hearing on Tuesday, November 21, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. Any future hearings will be listed on the DOJ website here.

    Back To Top
  4. How long will it be before I am paid out after the hearing?

    We don’t have a timeframe yet as it will depend on how long it takes the Court to review the final recommendations and will depend on whether there are any requests for Court review of the final recommendations.

    Back To Top
  5. Will I need to submit estate documentation to you or to the court?

    As noted in the Final Determination letter, the Court will provide further direction on submitting estate documentation.

    Back To Top
  6. Do I send my request for Court review to the Claims Administrator?

    No, any requests for a court review will need to be submitted to the Court. The Final Determination letter explains that you must seek a Court Review by December 11, 2017. You must use the specific Court Review form found here and mail it directly to the Court at the following address:

    Clerk of the Court
    Attn: U.S. v. Fata Restitution Claims
    231 W. Lafayette Blvd.
    Theodore Levin U.S. Courthouse
    Detroit, MI 48226

    Back To Top
  7. Can I wait to request further court review at the hearing?

    The Final Determination letter explains that you must seek a Court Review by December 11, 2017. You must use the specific Court Review form found here and mail it directly to the Court at the following address:

    Clerk of the Court
    Attn: U.S. v. Fata Restitution Claims
    231 W. Lafayette Blvd.
    Theodore Levin U.S. Courthouse
    Detroit, MI 48226

    Back To Top
  8. Will I be able to speak at hearings in this case?

    We do not have that information. You should check the DOJ website for information regarding the hearing and whether individuals will be able to speak at any future hearings. The website is ww.justice.gov/usao-edmi/us-v-farid-fata-court-docket-13-cr-20600.

    Back To Top
  9. Is the claims administrator also handling the disbursement?

    No, the Court will be handling the disbursement.

    Back To Top

Important Dates

  • November 14, 2016
    Postmark Deadline for Claim Forms
  • November 21, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. EST
    Court Hearing
    Additional Information Here