(CN) – The 10th Circuit revived a former employee’s claim that EnergySolutions improperly disposed of radioactive waste and lied to the government about it to keep collecting federal money.
Jolene Lemmons, the widow of former EnergySolutions worker Roger Lemmons, has replaced her late husband in a lawsuit accusing the company of submitting false claims to the government.
Lemmons and two former employees of a subcontractor claimed the waste disposal company ignored its reporting and maintenance requirements, violated the rules on the location and size of buried debris, and failed to report waste spills or the improper mixing of waste, among other breaches of contract.
EnergySolutions, formerly called Envirocare, then billed the government in full for its substandard work, according to the lawsuit.
However, a federal judge dismissed the claims as inadequate.
The Denver-based appeals court reversed, finding it “difficult to discern the purported … deficiencies.”
“Even if plaintiffs failed to state a claim arising directly from Envirocare’s regulatory obligations,” Judge Paul Kelly wrote, “plaintiffs’ allegations provided more than enough factual detail to support their contract-based claims.”
The circuit court concluded that the former workers “provided sufficient factual detail to demonstrate the viability of their [False Claims Act] claims.”