Qui Tam Attorneys Representing Individuals Across the United States
If you witness an illegal business practice that involves defrauding the government and taxpayers, then you may have questions about what you can do to report it, your right to seek protection, and incentives under the law. At the Whistleblower Law Firm, we can answer your questions about the possible risks and benefits of disclosing corporate wrongdoing to the government. Our qui tam lawyers represent individuals nationwide in a broad range of matters. We can provide the aggressive and capable representation you need to disclose corporate misconduct while protecting your rights.
What is a Whistleblower?
A whistleblower is a person who reports incidents of corporate or individual fraud or misconduct. Most whistleblowers are current or former employers of the entity engaged in the wrongdoing. They may report the incident to the appropriate parties within the organization, to the government, or both.
Does the Law Protect People Who Disclose Corporate Misconduct?
Several federal and state laws shield whistleblowers who come forward with evidence of illegal business practices. Most of these statutes prevent an employer from retaliating against an employee who takes action under these provisions. Examples of laws that protect whistleblowers include:
- False Claims Act (FCA), which makes it unlawful to submit fraudulent claims to the government. Whistleblowers have the right to initiate a suit on the government’s behalf through the FCA’s qui tam provision.
- Dodd-Frank Act, which protects individuals who disclose securities law violations to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
- Tax Relief and Health Care Act, which offers protection to those who report incidents of tax fraud to the Internal Revenue Service.
- National Defense Authorization Act, which protects individuals who disclose incidents of fraud or waste in the Department of Defense or NASA contracts.
These laws prevent employers from taking retaliatory actions against employees who disclose information about possible corporate wrongdoing. As a general matter, an entity cannot demote, fire, or take any other adverse action against the whistleblower. Otherwise, the employee has the right to seek damages, including back wages.
What Financial Rewards May Be Available?
Several laws provide a financial incentive to whistleblowers. Rewards under federal laws typically range from 15-30 percent of the amount recovered by the government. Some state laws offer higher amounts. The percentage usually depends on the applicable law, and how much you and your information helped the government in its case.
What Kind of Evidence Do I Need?
You should have specific and concrete documentation of the alleged fraud or misconduct. You will need this evidence to initiate an action. It will also play a role in determining the amount of your reward, if the government is successful. In most cases, the evidence will also need to be original, meaning that it should not be based on information that is publicly available, such as newspaper articles or court proceedings. Documents proving the fraud are also important.
Should I Report Corporate Wrongdoing Internally or Directly to the Government?
Before reporting any misconduct, it is important to contact a lawyer who can give you the best possible advice.
When Should I Report the Incident?
You should report fraud or misconduct as soon as possible. Most claims are subject to a statute of limitations, which means that unless you act within a specific time frame, you may not be able to take any action. Most laws also reward only the first individual who comes forward with information. In other words, you may not be eligible for a reward if you were not the first to approach the government.
Whistleblower Lawyers Serving Clients Nationwide
If you have witnessed corporate misconduct, our firm can disclose the misconduct on your behalf in order to protect you. Our whistleblower attorneys offer comprehensive representation to employees throughout the U.S. in qui tam and other actions. Our litigators have more than 200 years of combined legal experience handling complex cases. We can help you present a strong case to the government and take action to protect your rights when necessary. We represent clients across the U.S. Call our office today at (800) 982-1904 to schedule a free and confidential consultation. You can also fill out our online form.