United States of America et al v. Vaughan Regional Medical Center, LLC
ORDER re: 62 Joint Stipulation of Dismissal. This action is DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE as set out. The Clerk is DIRECTED to close this case. Signed by District Judge Terry F. Moorer on 1/14/2020.
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, ex rel.,
SAMUEL C. CLEMMONS,
VAUGHAN REGIONAL MEDICAL
CENTER, LLC, and LIFEPOINT
CIVIL ACTION NO. 2:14-cv-416-TFM-C
Pending before the Court is a Joint Stipulation of Dismissal (Doc. 62, filed 1/13/20), in
which the United States and the Relator, Samuel C. Clemmons, stipulate to dismissal with
prejudice of all claims brought in this qui tam case against the two remaining defendants,
Vaughan Regional Medical Center and LifePoint Hospitals, Inc. (now known as LifePoint
Health, Inc.), pursuant to the terms of a settlement agreement executed on August 30, 2019.
Doc. 50. The United States and Relator state that the parties have reached an agreement in full
settlement of all claims, including Relator’s claim for payment of reasonable expenses,
attorney’s fees and costs under 31 U.S.C. § 3730(d)(1).
The Plaintiffs have filed their stipulations under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
41(a)(1) and 41(a)(2). Under Rule 41(a)(1)(A), a “plaintiff may dismiss an action without a
court order by filing: (i) a notice of dismissal before the opposing party serves either an answer
or a motion for summary judgment; or (ii) a stipulation of dismissal signed by all parties who
have appeared.” FED. R. CIV. P. 41(a)(1)(A). Here, the defendants have not filed an answer or
motion for summary judgment, or even appeared on the docket. Moreover, the United States and
the Relator state that they have reached an agreement that fully settles the claims and issues
between the parties, including any potential claims by Relator for a share of the settlement
proceeds and payment of reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs.
Rule 41(a)(2) provides that “an action may be dismissed at plaintiff’s request … by court
order, on terms that the court considers proper.” FED. R. CIV. P. 41(a)(2). The False Claims Act
does not appear to require the Court’s approval of a settlement where, as here, the United States
has intervened and both the United States and the Relator support the settlement agreement
reached with the defendants. Thus, stipulation to dismissal appears appropriate. Nevertheless,
there is no question that the Court may dismiss the action pursuant to Rule 41(a)(2).
Accordingly, this action is DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE pursuant to Rule 41(a)(2)
as to the remaining defendants pursuant to the terms of the settlement agreements. Consistent
with the settlement agreements, this Court retains jurisdiction over any disputes that may arise
regarding the parties’ compliance with the agreements.
As this was the last remaining matter, the Clerk of Court is DIRECTED to close this
DONE and ORDERED this 14th day of January 2020.
/s/ Terry F. Moorer
TERRY F. MOORER
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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