Webster & Fredrickson is committed to fighting on behalf of individuals who expose wrongdoing or illegal conduct.
There are several laws protecting employees from retaliation for bringing illegal conduct to light. In many cases, those laws require employees to bring their claims in as little as thirty days. It is critical that you act quickly if you believe you have suffered retaliation because you blew the whistle.
There are a growing number of laws that reward whistleblowers who inform the government of wrongdoing. In some cases, if the government collects fines or other remedies, the government will share a portion of its recovery with the first person who informed the government of the wrongdoing.
Being first to inform the government is important; if you have information of wrongdoing it is important that you seek representation quickly.
Employees and individuals who blow the whistle on illegal, fraudulent, or other wrongful conduct can face retaliation by their employers who wanted to keep that information secret. In many cases, employees are protected against retaliation by one or more laws, including (but not limited to):
- Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002
- The Federal Whistleblower Protection Act
- District of Columbia Whistleblower Protection Act
- American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
- False Claims Act
- Water Pollution Control Act (also called the Clean Water Act)
- Safe Drinking Water Act
- Toxic Substances Control Act
- Solid Waste Disposal Act; Clear Air Act
- Energy Reorganization Act of 1974
- Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980
- Surface Transportation Assistance Act
- Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century
- Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act
- Maryland Health Care Worker Whistleblower Protection Act
Qui Tam Suits
In addition to providing protection for whistleblowers, some laws, like the False Claims Act, allow people who disclose fraud against the government to share in the government’s recovery.
In these “qui tam” suits, an individual can sue a person or company in the government’s name for defrauding the government. If the suit is successful, or if the case is settled, the individual can receive up to 30% of what the government recovers in fines and damages.
Only the first person who files suit can recover, so it is important that you act quickly if you have information regarding fraud against the government.
Both the IRS and SEC also operate bounty programs to encourage individuals with knowledge of tax evasion or violations of SEC regulations and/or corporate fraud to inform the government of such wrongdoing.
Whistleblowers who report wrongdoing which lead to fines by the government may be entitled to a share in the government’s recovery.
If you believe you have been the victim of retaliation or discrimination because you reported or complained about wrongdoing, or if you have information about fraud against the government, tax evasion, or corporate wrongdoing, please contact us.