Whistleblower / Qui Tam Cases
Atlanta Whistleblower Attorney
Whistleblower (otherwise known as False Claims Act or Qui Tam) cases provide a mechanism to recover funds that have been fraudulently taken from the government by corporations. These cases are an important tool used to protect our public funds, because they are not "anti-business" in any way--only "anti-fraud."
The government may discover the "false claims" or fraudulent conduct and pursue these cases directly, or individual whistleblowers may identify the false claims and bring them to the attention of the government, pursue the case on behalf of the government and receive a portion of the recovery as an incentive for serving the public good.
If your employer wants you to do something illegal, or if you become aware of unlawful acts in the workplace, you may have no choice but to report the wrongful acts. Keeping quiet may result in unsafe working conditions, the government being defrauded, or you being prosecuted for engaging in a "cover up." However, if you report the unlawful acts, your employer may retaliate against you by making your working life miserable or even firing you. Since you need your job, the choice is a difficult one for many people.
Fortunately, there are a number of state and federal "whistleblower" laws in place to protect workers in this situation. The following is a partial listing of the laws in place to protect whistleblowers:
The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) regulates safety in the workplace and requires that employers comply with all applicable safety regulations. Importantly, OSHA protects whistleblowers that report unsafe conditions. If your employer does not follow these rules, and you blow the whistle on the employer, OSHA's whistleblower provisions provide you with protection against retaliation by your employer.
The False Claims Act
Most False Claims Acts cases stem from corporations who cheat one arm or another of the federal government. The federal False Claims Act governs companies that conduct business with the federal government. The False Claims Act protects you (the whistleblower) from unlawful retaliation and, if you uncover and report a fraud on the federal government, you could receive a portion (usually about 15 to 25 percent) of any recovered money. Some successful plaintiffs have recovered millions of dollars in False Claims cases.