Since 2010, the public disclosure bar to a False Claims Act qui tam action (31 USC 3730) has applied to public disclosure of the same claim in an “other” Federal “hearing.”  This decision holds that ex parte patent prosecutions before the Patent Office are other hearings for this purpose.  The statute was intended to encompass public disclosures made in federal governmental investigations and investigatory proceedings.  Patent prosecutions fit within that mold as the government investigates the inventor’s claim to have met the requirements for issuance of a patent