Whistleblowing and False Claims Act
Your job may put you in a position to witness or receive information about corporate wrongdoing, health care fraud, illegal tax schemes, or other improper practices. You do not want to turn a blind eye to these violations, but you also want to protect yourself. What should you do? How can you report the wrongdoing, to whom should you report it, and will you be protected against retaliation if you do?
Federal and state laws have been enacted to protect whistleblowers, but that doesn’t stop retaliation, the loss of a job and a blot on someone’s reputation for pointing out the misdeeds of others. We provide counsel to men and women who face the difficult choice of becoming a whistleblower. And we defend them if their rights are trampled because they did the right thing and blow the whistle on misconduct.
Congress has established several reward programs for people who come forward to report a wide variety of improper activities such as fraudulent claims to the government, abusive corporate practices, tax fraud and underpayments, and banking violations. Laws like the False Claims Act (also known as “qui tam” claims); Sarbanes-Oxley; Dodd-Frank; and, the Whistleblower Protection Act, are all designed to help ferret out corporate fraud and abuse and reward people who come forward. These laws encourage reporting of problems like falsification of Medicare and Medicaid claims, accounting and securities violations, and illegal tax underpayment by offering the possibility that the whistleblower may receive a percentage of the amount that the government recovers. The laws also prohibit retaliation against whistleblowers for reporting. It is critical, however, that you know what you are doing as you report problems to ensure that the government takes your claims seriously, and to protect yourself in the process.
Experienced attorneys at Johnson Lucas & Middleton can help you sort through your situation, advise you on whether you might be eligible for a reward for reporting information you may have, and represent you throughout the reporting process. We have represented whistleblowers bringing qui tam claims under the False Claims Act as well as other laws encouraging and protecting whistleblowers. If you have already objected to illegal practices in your company and suffered retaliation, we can also help you to protect your rights and recover your losses. You want to do the right thing. Johnson Johnson Lucas & Middleton can help you do it.