To combat the COVID-19 pandemic, both on the medical and economic fronts, the United States government has committed large sums of money and implemented regulatory programs to achieve those ends. The pandemic has not only affected the safety and well-being of individuals, but it has also affected businesses, both large and small, who have been struck by the sudden uncertainties affecting our economy. In light of these implemented measures, unscrupulous individuals have sought to gain personal benefit from these programs by committing fraud to the detriment of those legitimately entitled to the aid being provided. These frauds not only frustrate the purpose of government aid and programs, directly affecting those who are the intended beneficiaries but are also a waste of taxpayer money. 

In its fight against fraud, the government greatly depends on whistleblowers: people who are willing to come forward with information and evidence in their possession concerning fraud and misconduct. In many cases, the government does not have all the information necessary to find and prosecute those who commit fraud. Often, only whistleblowers can shed light on the fraudulent conduct of others. To encourage whistleblowers to come forward, many laws protect against retaliation in cases where the person is blowing the whistle on their employer. Many of these laws and programs, such as the federal False Claims Act, also provide monetary rewards, financially compensating those who do the right thing.


In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the government implemented various measures to combat the dual health and financial crisis. On an economic level, the government has taken steps providing for scientific research, medical testing, and treatment of patients. To address the financial crisis, the government has taken measures to directly aid individuals going through economic need, as well as programs aimed at helping businesses weather these unprecedented times.

A landmark law enacted by the federal government to help mitigate the effects of the pandemic was the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). This statute provided $2.2 trillion of economic stimulus and was enacted in March 2020. The CARES Act provided direct cash payments to individuals who file tax returns in the U.S., leading to many individuals receiving $1,200. Larger sums were provided to families with children. This statute also increased unemployment benefits. It also created the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). 

Under the PPP, many small businesses could obtain forgivable loans. If a business obtained a PPP loan and used the amounts received for specific purposes, it did not have to pay off the loan. The primary purpose of the PPP was to avoid mass layoffs of employees due to unfavorable financial conditions. If employers kept employees, instead of laying them off, by using funds received from a PPP loan to cover payroll, they could later get the loan forgiven. 

The CARES Act also established the Economic Stabilization Fund (ESF) and expanded the Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL). The ESF helped eligible businesses, municipalities, and states in the form of loans and other investments. Similarly, the EIDL provided loans to businesses so that they could continue to operate during the pandemic.

Following up on and extending the CARES Act, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 provided almost $900 billion of coronavirus stimulus relief. Among its major components, it offered more funds for the PPP, an additional direct cash payment to eligible individuals of $600, monies to extend federal unemployment benefits, and billions of dollars for vaccines and testing. 

Approximately one year after the CARES Act was enacted, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 was signed into law in March 2021. This statute provided for an additional $1.9 trillion in economic stimulus intended to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and sought to build on what had already been done by the CARES Act and the Consolidated Appropriations Act. Its key provisions extended unemployment benefits, expanded several tax credits, provided for another direct payment to individuals, more monies for the EIDL and PPP programs, and funds for vaccines and testing.

As can be seen, measures implemented by the federal government in light of the COVID-19 pandemic have been substantial and among the most expensive in U.S. legislative history. Many of these were landmark pieces of legislation, significantly surpassing measures taken in previous years in response to other emergencies and economic recessions. 

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Securities / Derivatives Fraud

Fraud Against the Government

Tax Fraud

Cryptocurrencies Fraud

Defense Contractor Fraud

Money Laundering

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act


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