Karen draws from her deep health care regulatory knowledge to provide legal and practical business counsel to clients across the health care and life sciences industries. Recognized by a client in Chambers USA as an “absolute star attorney in the area of health care compliance,” Karen applies this foundation when representing clients in state and federal government investigations, transactions, and day to day regulatory and operational matters. She is known and highly regarded for her commitment to providing exceptional client service and her unique ability to guide clients through the complex maze of regulatory and business issues, providing holistic guidance on both to in-house counsel. Karen is the Chair of the firm’s Health Law Practice and serves as a member of the Policy Committee.
Karen’s substantial health care regulatory and compliance background includes advising clients on matters pertaining to the federal anti-kickback statute, the Stark law, state statutes prohibiting kickbacks and self-referrals, Medicare and Medicaid program requirements, the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA), the federal Physician Payments Sunshine Act, and state licensure laws. She routinely works with clients to develop and implement health care compliance programs in order to avoid the government spotlight, oversees internal investigations, and advises clients on the legal, practical, and fraud and abuse implications of business arrangements and sales and marketing practices.
In the transactional context, Karen serves as health care regulatory counsel to clients across the industry, including private equity firms and other investors, in mergers, acquisitions, and other transactional matters. Karen has led many complex due diligence projects involving health care companies in a vast array of industry areas, including behavioral health, laboratories, diagnostic companies, hospice and home health providers, and benefit management companies, to name a few.
In addition to counseling health care and life sciences entities on regulatory matters arising in connection with transactions, Karen represents clients subject to federal False Claims Act investigations and qui tam litigation, state investigations involving false claims/insurance fraud, state and federal surveys and inspections, and state licensure proceedings. Her extensive experience representing clients in high-stakes government investigations has involved the negotiation and structuring of settlement agreements with the US Department of Justice and its US Attorneys’ Offices and state Attorneys’ General Offices, as well as corporate integrity agreements with the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General. In the negotiation of a recent significant settlement on behalf of a client with several US Attorneys’ offices and the Department of Justice, Karen successfully negotiated no admission of liability or implementation of a corporate integrity agreement.
Karen also specializes in the representation of laboratories and diagnostics companies. She regularly counsels on compliance with CLIA and state laboratory licensure laws, federal and state limitations on billing for diagnostic services, and legal restrictions on sales and marketing activities. Karen has served as regulatory counsel in a number of mergers and acquisitions involving laboratories and diagnostics companies and has represented numerous laboratories and diagnostics companies in state and federal government investigations.
She is a frequent author and speaker on regulatory and compliance issues confronting the industry, and editor of the firm’s Health Care Viewpoints.
- American University (JD, magna cum laude)
- West Virginia University (BA, summa cum laude)
- Served as lead counsel to two national independent laboratories in a federal investigation of violations of the federal False Claims Act based on billing and sales/marketing practices as well as quality of care allegations. The government filed a notice of non-intervention, and the parties reached a settlement favorable to the laboratories.
- Designed and drafted a diagnostics company’s compliance program policies and conducted general and specialized compliance training programs for employees and board members.
- Advised a national independent laboratory on state, federal, and accrediting agency notice and approval requirements in connection with the division of the company and oversaw the preparation of hundreds of filings to be submitted to all licensure and accreditation agencies, the Medicare program, and state Medicaid programs nationwide.
- Counseled a specialty laboratory regarding whether and how to make a self-disclosure related to a Medicare overpayment and met with the U.S. Attorney’s Office regarding the self-disclosure, which did not lead to further investigation or enforcement action.
- Counseled a national independent laboratory on state, federal, and accrediting agency notice and approval requirements in connection with its acquisition by an international diagnostics and laboratory services company, and prepared over one hundred filings to be submitted to a variety of agencies.
Recognition & Awards
- Chambers USA: District of Columbia – Healthcare (2014 – 2020)
- Recognized by The Legal 500 United States for Healthcare: Service Providers (2014 – 2020)
- Included on the Washington DC Super Lawyers: Health Care list (2017, 2019-2020)
- Phi Beta Kappa
- Membership Committee, The Women Business Leaders of the U.S. Health Care Industry Foundation
- Board Member, DC KinCare Alliance
- Board Member, DC SCORES (2013 – 2016)
- Board Member, Suited for Change (2007 – 2010)