A whistleblower is someone – usually an employee – who comes forward with information that exposes some form of employer wrongdoing. The Government Accountability Project specifically defines a whistleblower as an employee who discloses evidence of illegality, gross waste or fraud, mismanagement, abuse of power, general wrongdoing, or a substantial and specific danger to public health and safety.
The whistleblower attorneys at Burg Simpson would like you to know that whistleblowers in the United States are protected by a number of federal and state statutes. The first of these laws was the False Claims Act of 1863. It is a powerful federal law that is often used to impose legal liability on those who defraud the American government. Whistleblower complaints that are filed under the False Claims Act generally pertain to healthcare, the military, and other large, heavily funded government programs. The U.S. government has recovered tens of billions of dollars since the late 1980s under the False Claims Act alone. Other well-known federal statutes that contain provisions protecting whistleblowers include the Clear Air Act, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and the Affordable Care Act, just to name a few. An experienced whistleblower attorney can help guide you through the process of building your case.
Cases brought pursuant to a whistleblower statute, as well as analogous state and local laws, are commonly referred to as qui tam actions. The term “qui tam” derives from an English common law tradition that allowed private litigants to sue for damages that had been inflicted against the crown. Allowing a similar remedy, many whistleblower statutes allow private citizens to become whistleblowers seeking justice on behalf of the United States government. To incentivize private citizens to do that the False Claims Act authorizes them to receive a share in the government’s recovery – usually between 15 and 30 percent.
Burg Simpson is the professional home of many highly experienced qui tam and whistleblower attorneys who are well versed in how to successfully handle what can be, and usually are, highly complex cases involving powerful and deep-pocketed adversaries. The qui tam lawyers at our firm have a distinguished track record of providing confidential and effective legal counsel to whistleblowers from all walks of life and many fields of employment.
Schedule a Free Case Evaluation
The growing prevalence of whistleblowing has been instrumental in shaping contemporary American democracy. It is virtually certain that, without whistleblower laws and the protections they provide, the people of this country would never have uncovered the illegalities of Watergate, Enron’s deceptive accounting practices, and the sprawling global surveillance programs undertaken in the post-9/11 world by the United States and other countries.
Anyone who is making the sometimes-daunting choice of becoming a whistleblower should be aware of how important it is to follow all rules and procedures and should seek the guidance of a whistleblower attorney. For example, adhering to the requirements that are laid out in the applicable whistleblower statute can protect you from being fired, as well as help ensure that you are financially awarded for aiding in the wrongdoer’s prosecution.
The whistleblower attorneys at Burg Simpson strongly encourage anyone who has non-public information regarding possible fraud being committed against a government agency or private organization to promptly seek the advice of skilled legal counsel. The qui tam lawyers at Burg Simpson are standing by ready to help whistleblowers confidently navigate the legal process. During a confidential and free case evaluation, a whistleblower attorney from our award-winning and nationally recognized law firm will endeavor to determine whether you might be eligible for compensation under either federal or state law.