When it comes to The False Claims Act and the examples of Qui Tam suits, it’s important to understand why it’s so important to find a high-quality whistleblower attorney. Most whistleblower claims come under this Act, which is also known as the Lincoln Law. This act gives an individual the right to bring suit against companies or other individuals who are committing fraud against the federal government. These rules are based around the Qui Tam actions that stretch back all the way to England in the 1200s, where individuals could bring suit against others on behalf of the king.
How Do Whistleblower Cases Work?
In a whistleblower case generally a person has knowledge and evidence of an instance where a person, organization, or corporation is knowingly committing fraud against the federal government. The whistleblower files the claim on behalf of the government which may or may not join in with the court proceedings at a later date. If the evidence is there the case proceeds, with the whistleblower’s identity kept a secret for as much as possible.
What Is the Process for Whistleblower Cases?
The process for a whistleblower case starts with an individual finding evidence that fraud is knowingly being committed against the federal government. A claim is filed in secret under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, according to WhistleBlowers.org. A copy of the complaint that is made must be given to the US Attorney for the district where the complaint is from, as well as being forwarded to the office of the US Attorney General.
These reports are kept as confidential as possible in the beginning stages. If the government decides there is enough evidence to go forward, the case moves into court. The government can choose to join in the claim, or they may decline but still allow the case to go forward. Generally speaking, if the case is won then the whistleblower is entitled to a portion of the fines or penalties grabbed from the offending parties.
Worker Rights under Whistleblower Laws
While workers and individuals have various protections under the various whistleblower laws on the books, it’s critical to hire the services of a talented and experienced whistleblower attorney from the very beginning. These laws are complicated and certain actions early on can prevent your case from moving forward. Likewise, to get the full protection you’re entitled to it’s important to make sure you have legal coverage from the very beginning.
A quality whistleblower law attorney will be able to make sure you get all of your rights as a worker or whistleblower including but not limited to: reinstatement to work, double pay for forced missed work, a percentage of the fines or penalties levied, legal fees, and some instances of special compensation. It is important to know that many of these only apply if the whistleblower’s side of the case wins. If they lose and fraud isn’t proven, then the protections get much more complicated.
No matter how good the case, it’s critical that you have the appropriate legal protection early on in the process. This is a complicated procedure, especially since a whistleblower is taking on a fraud case on behalf of the government. The legal intricacies of this situation means you don’t want to wing any part of this process alone.
There are also state versions of this law to consider. Some states don’t have any laws on this matter or just follow federal statutes. However, some states have additional laws and rules when it comes to whistleblowing cases. A good attorney will be able to help you navigate any state statutes to make sure everything runs smoothly. Don’t go to court without one!