A qui tam lawsuit may be brought under the False Claims Act with the assistance
of information provided by a whistleblower. Whistleblowers are individuals
who expose acts of wrongdoing. For example, a chemist working for a pharmaceutical
company might reveal evidence that the company concealed the unfavorable
results from a clinical trial. Whistleblowers are afforded certain legal
protections. If you have become aware of acts of wrongdoing, it’s
in your best interests to speak with a
civil rights attorney in San Jose, CA. You will need plenty of employment law advice to navigate
the legal process and protect your rights.
What are protected disclosures?
Whistleblower protections are intended to encourage individuals to come
forward with their knowledge of acts of wrongdoing or misconduct that
are illegal. Protected disclosures also include actions that violate certain
How can employees make protected disclosures?
It’s strongly recommended that employees or other individuals consult
a civil rights attorney before taking any actions. The lawyer will review
the specifics of the situation to determine if the whistleblower should
report the misconduct internally or to an appropriate government agency.
Federal employees, for instance, may make a protected disclosure to their
agency’s Office of Inspector General or to a member of Congress.
They also have the option of having an employment law attorney file a
complaint with the Office of Special Counsel (OSC). It is possible to
make an anonymous protected disclosure; talk to your labor rights lawyer
about protecting your identity.
What are prohibited retaliatory actions?
One common reason why potential whistleblowers hesitate to step forward
is that they fear the possibility of retaliation. Retaliatory acts can
indeed occur, but they are unlawful. If you believe you have experienced
a retaliatory act after revealing misconduct, see your lawyer immediately.
Deadlines do apply to filing complaints regarding retaliatory actions.
Whistleblowers are protected from being demoted, fired, blacklisted, and
denied benefits because of their actions. They are protected from retaliatory
discipline, reductions in pay or hours, threats, acts of intimidation,
and reassignments that affect promotions.