Brian McCormick, Jr. — Esq.

Brian McCormick, Jr.

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Brian J. McCormick, Jr., joined Ross Feller Casey in April 2014. He has a national practice that includes pharmaceutical injury and product liability mass tort litigation, as well as representing whistleblowers in qui tam and fraud actions involving the waste of government funds and resources.

Since June 2020 alone, McCormick helped the federal government settle four notable whistleblower cases:

  • Incyte Corporation agreed to pay the federal government more than $12.6 million to resolve allegations that it operated a kickback scheme involving its popular cancer drug Jakafi (ruxolitinib). Allegations in the case surfaced due to a whistleblower lawsuit filed by Ross Feller Casey, LLP, on behalf of a former employee of the Wilmington, Delaware-based pharmaceutical company. Learn more about the case
  • A Johnson & Johnson subsidiary and a private equity firm agreed to pay $11.5 million to settle allegations that Therakos, Inc., a company they both owned, violated the federal False Claims Act by marketing a medical device for unapproved uses. Learn more about the case
  • A New Jersey pharmaceutical company, Pacira Pharmaceuticals, Inc., agreed to pay $3.5 million to resolve allegations that it engaged in a scheme to pay kickbacks to doctors in the form of bogus research grants to induce them to prescribe Pacira’s analgesic product, Exparel. Learn more about the case
  • A trade school near Allentown, Pa., Metro Beauty Academy, agreed to pay $425,000 to settle allegations that it knowingly submitted claims for federal financial aid for students who weren't eligible for it. Learn more about the case

McCormick, a partner at the firm, has assisted the U.S. government to successfully prosecute several landmark qui tam actions, including representing individuals in four of the largest whistleblower settlements in U.S. history:

  • U.S. ex rel. Rainero v. Pfizer, Inc.: Pfizer, Inc. agreed to plead guilty to criminal conduct and to pay $2.3 billion in fines, penalties, and damages to settle allegations that the pharmaceutical giant defrauded Medicare, Medicaid, and other government-funded healthcare programs through its market practices for four of its drugs, including Geodon and Zyvox.
  • U.S. ex rel. Starr v. Johnson & Johnson: Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiaries paid more than $2.2 billion to resolve criminal and civil liability arising from allegations relating to the prescription drugs Risperdal and Invega, including promotion for uses not approved by the FDA, and payment of kickbacks to physicians and to the pharmacy providers. The global resolution was one of the largest healthcare fraud settlements in U.S. history.
  • U.S. ex rel. Rudolph v. Eli Lilly & Co.: Eli Lilly agreed to plead guilty and pay $1.415 billion for promoting its drug Zyprexa for uses not approved by the FDA. It included a criminal fine of $515 million—at that time the largest ever in a healthcare case, and the largest criminal fine for an individual corporation ever imposed in a United States criminal prosecution of any kind. Eli Lilly also paid $800 million in a civil settlement with the federal government and the states.
  • U.S. ex rel. Wetta v. AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, LP: AstraZeneca agreed to pay $520 million in civil fines, penalties, and damages to settle allegations that the company defrauded Medicare, Medicaid, and other government-funded healthcare programs in connection with its marketing for the blockbuster atypical antipsychotic Seroquel.

McCormick also assisted the federal government, and the state of California recover $6.6 million from a pharmaceutical company allegedly involved in a scheme to provide kickbacks to induce physicians to prescribe its dermatological products. The case, which was settled in May 2019, involved Almirall, LLC, formerly known as Aqua Pharmaceuticals, of Pennsylvania, and was prompted by a former employee who brought the fraud allegations to light. Learn more about the case

Other successful qui tam cases include:

  • McCormick helped the federal government achieve a settlement from Atlantic Spine & Joint Institute, a pain clinic with offices in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, in which the medical practice’s owners agreed to pay $1.78 million to settle Medicare fraud allegations. Learn more about the case
  • Working with federal lawyers, McCormick helped reach a $6.07 million settlement that resolved allegations that medical device companies EBI, LLC, of New Jersey, and Biomet, Inc., of Indiana, used kickbacks to induce physicians to purchase their bone growth stimulators. The case, which settled in 2014, was prompted by a former company employee who McCormick represented.
  • McCormick was instrumental in obtaining $750,000 to settle allegations of Medicare fraud against a Florida doctor and his pain management clinic. The suit alleged that Dr. Steven Chun and Sarasota Pain Associates submitted claims for procedures and services that were never performed.  McCormick represented two former nurses who worked for the doctor and reported his fraudulent activities.

McCormick has also represented clients in cases involving the drugs Xarelto, Risperdal, Seroquel, Zyprexa, Avandia, Gadolinium, and Levaquin, as well as faulty medical devices, including breast implant products.

McCormick was co-counsel in two of the Risperdal bellwether trials in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas involving young men who developed painful, enlarged breasts after taking the drug. He also has served in leadership roles in several of the litigations involving these drugs. For example, he was appointed to serve on the national Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee in the Risperdal and Invega Product Liability Cases presently before the Superior Court of California and previously served as Lead Counsel in the Risperdal mass tort litigation in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas.

Before becoming one of the nation’s top mass tort and whistleblower litigators, McCormick was a partner in the Philadelphia office of a large, international law firm. There, he represented Fortune 500 companies in a variety of complex commercial litigation matters, including corporate investigations, shareholder and partnership disputes, securities litigation, healthcare matters, and Medicare fraud.

The Legal Intelligencer in February 2015 named McCormick among the Top 10 Lateral Hires for 2014. The selection took into account the effect his departure had on his previous law firm, the positive impact for Ross Feller Casey, and “the buzz around the market when the move took place,” the nation’s oldest legal journal wrote. Read the story below:

McCormick was a featured expert on a December 2015 episode of the cable legal affairs program The American Law Journal that explored whether a criminal crackdown on corporate executives is afoot. Watch segment

A Philadelphia native, McCormick has practiced before trial and appellate judges in both state and federal courts and has represented numerous clients in alternative dispute resolution forums such as the American Arbitration Association and JAMS. He has also represented clients in numerous mediations and recognizes the cost-effectiveness of certain ADR procedures. He has extensive experience with advanced trial technologies that are highly effective with today’s jurors.

McCormick, a former reporter himself, is a sought-after interview by journalists for stories involving whistleblower issues as well as defective drug and medical device litigation, and he has lectured extensively on those topics across the country.

Appointed by Philadelphia Mayor James F. Kenney to his second five-year term, McCormick serves as one of five members of the city’s Board of Ethics, which investigates and reviews potential ethics and conflict of interest violations, as well as campaign finance violations. He has served on the Board since December 2012, when he was appointed by then-Mayor Michael Nutter and confirmed by Philadelphia City Council.

McCormick received his undergraduate degree from the University of Richmond and his J.D. with honors from Rutgers University School of Law.

McCormick is admitted to practice before numerous courts around the country, including the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, the United States Court of Federal Claims and all state and federal courts in New Jersey.

Before attending law school, McCormick served as an analyst with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in its Philadelphia office, where he was responsible for researching, collecting, and distilling information and disseminating it to agents nationwide.