A kickback is a payment that is made to someone who has helped facilitate a transaction. This word generally refers to illegal compensation make to someone in the midst of a white collar crime.
Kickbacks are usually intended to bribe someone, or to pay them, for their improper services. They may come in several forms, such as receiving assets or compensation for helping with a transaction.
What are some examples of kickbacks?
Some good examples of kickbacks include a bookkeeper for a restaurant inflating the invoice for a third-party’s goods. The third party may then give the bookkeeper some of that money to keep using them as their service provider in the future.
Another example is if a medical provider is approached with a drug that a company wants to sell and is told that they’ll receive compensation for every prescription written.
Yet another time this could happen is with government contracts. A contractor may offer a bid that isn’t as low as someone else’s, but if they bribe the procurement officer, then the officer may decide to accept that bid to receive compensation or an award of some kind.
Accepting kickbacks is against the law, as is offering them in most cases. Kickbacks aren’t the same as referral fees or royalties, which may be part of a contract between two parties.
Who investigates claims about kickbacks between businesses or individuals?
Claims about kickbacks are investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. You may face an investigation if you’ve been accused of paying kickbacks as a way to get ahead in business or if you’re accused of accepting kickbacks in exchange for information.
What should you do if you find out that you’re under investigation?
If you find out that you’re under investigation for kickbacks, it’s vital that you take steps to protect your interests. A white collar crime is a federal crime, so there is a risk of imprisonment as well as significant, heavy fines. Your attorney will help you understand what you’re being accused of and make sure you know what steps to take to protect yourself during an investigation.