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Searching 2021-2022 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

 

Title 32 : Taxation and Finance

Chapter 007 : THE PUBLIC MONIES

Subchapter 008 : VERMONT FALSE CLAIMS ACT

(Cite as: 32 V.S.A. § 633)
  • § 633. Rights of the parties to qui tam actions

    (a) If the State proceeds with the action, the Attorney General shall have the primary responsibility for prosecuting the action, and shall not be bound by any act of the relator. The relator shall have the right to continue as a party to the action, subject to the limitations in subsection (b) of this section.

    (b)(1) The Attorney General may move to dismiss the action if the relator has been notified by the Attorney General of the filing of the motion and the court has provided the relator with an opportunity for a hearing on the motion.

    (2) Notwithstanding any objection of a relator, the Attorney General may settle the action with the defendant if after a hearing the court determines that the proposed settlement is fair, adequate, and reasonable under all the circumstances.

    (3) Upon a showing by the Attorney General that unrestricted participation during the course of the litigation by the relator would interfere with or unduly delay the prosecution of the case or would be repetitious, irrelevant, or for purposes of harassment, the court may, in its discretion, impose limitations on the relator's participation, such as:

    (A) limiting the number of witnesses the relator may call;

    (B) limiting the length of the testimony of such witnesses;

    (C) limiting the relator's cross-examination of witnesses; or

    (D) otherwise limiting the participation by the relator in the litigation.

    (4) Upon a showing by the defendant that unrestricted participation during the course of the litigation by the relator would be for purposes of harassment or would cause the defendant undue burden or unnecessary expense, the court may limit the participation by the relator in the litigation.

    (c) If the Attorney General elects not to proceed with the action, the relator who initiated the action shall have the right to conduct the action. If the Attorney General so requests, it shall be served with copies of all pleadings filed in the action in accordance with the Rules of Civil Procedure and shall be supplied with copies of all deposition transcripts at the State's expense. When a relator proceeds with the action, the court, without limiting the status and rights of the relator, may nevertheless permit the Attorney General to intervene at a later date upon a showing of good cause.

    (d) Whether or not the Attorney General proceeds with the action, upon a showing by the Attorney General that discovery by the relator would interfere with the State's investigation or prosecution of a criminal or civil matter arising out of the same or similar facts, the court may stay such discovery for a period of not more than 60 days. The court may extend the 60-day period upon a further showing that the Attorney General has pursued the criminal or civil investigation or proceedings with reasonable diligence and may stay any proposed discovery in the civil action that will interfere with the ongoing criminal or civil investigation or proceedings. (Added 2015, No. 25, § 1, eff. May 18, 2015.)