Whistleblower Cases

WHISTLEBLOWER CLAIMS

 

In light of the recent corporate Enron and Worldcom scandals, Congress has recently made changes to our whistle blower protection laws. As a result, people who report corporate corruption are entitled to enhanced protections from retaliation and discrimination.

Federal and State laws also provide that people who "blow the whistle" on companies that have defrauded the Government are entitled to a percentage of all monies recovered in the legal action.

Furthermore, both State and Federal law allow private citizens to sue corporations on behalf of the government when a corporation is committing fraud on the taxpayers. Under these laws, the citizen, known as the “qui tam” plaintiff, is entitled to a percentage of any recovery obtained from such a lawsuit.

Becoming a “whistle-blower” and actually blowing the whistle on a company or government entity can be an emotionally demanding and career altering step.  However, many whistleblowers who have tried and failed to stop the defrauders short of litigation believe that pursing a qui tam action as their civic duty and only ethical choice. 

The law rewards whistleblowers with a reward and the payments can be substantial.  Over the last 10 years, qui tam whistleblowers under the Federal False Claims Act have recovered almost $10,000,000,000 (ten billion dollars) for the United States, and have received over $1,600,000,000 (one billion six hundred million dollars) for themselves as a reward.  These staggering sums do not even count the hundreds of millions of dollars whistleblowers have recovered under similar State false claims statutes. 

In addition to any financial rewards, whistleblower suits also bring needed protections for whistleblowers.  The Federal False Claims Act (and those of many states) prohibits retaliation against whistleblowers and provides meaningful remedies, such as double back pay, emotional distress and punitive damages, if the employer does not abide.  When the employer is a governmental entity or a contractor exercising governmental powers, then the First Amendment to the United States Constitution can provide even more protections.

Congress recently took a step towards protecting the interests of tax whisteblowers in the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006.  Similar to the FCA, the Tax Relief Act provides for bounties for tax whistleblowers of between 15%-30% of the recovery by the government, subject to reduction in certain circumstances.  The bounty applies to all sums recovered by the IRS including taxes, penalties, interest, additions to tax, and other monies owed by the person or entity committing the fraud.  The whistleblower has the right to appeal the IRS’ decision on the bounty percentage in the event that the IRS has not awarded a fair or accurate amount to the whistleblower.

Here are a few sample whistleblower cases:

United States ex rel. Cericola v. Fannie Mae, United States District Court for the Central District of California (Banking industry insider brings False Claims Act case against Fannie Mae for mortgage fraud, blowing the whistle before the public and Congress learned about the mortgage giant’s rampant abuses). 

Vance v. Rumsfeld, United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (A private contractor in Iraq who blew the whistle on governmental corruption and bribery schemes sues Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld) 

United States ex rel. Coppock v. Northrop Grumman Corp., United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas (Environmental treatment worker brought innovative False Claims Act and retaliation suit against military defense contractor for polluting federal government property and local public waterways in and around Dallas, Texas). 
 
Hanania v. Betty Loren-Maltese, United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (Former government employees who blew the whistle on corruption and mafia control of the government in a Chicago suburb/ before/ the federal government prosecuted the mob-connected mayor, sued for whistleblower retaliation and won).  

Share and Enjoy:
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases
  • services sprite Whistleblower Cases

ERISA LAWS
ERISA sets minimum standards for participation, vesting, benefit accrual and funding of employee retirement accounts so funds placed in those plans will be there when they retire.

ERISA FAQS
Click here for answers to frequently asked and answered Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) Law questions.

FAMILY LEAVE ACT
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides certain employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year. It also requires that group health benefits be maintained during the leave. Click here for info on the FMLA.

THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964
Makes it unlawful to refuse to hire, fire or segregate any person from the privileges of employment, because of the individual's race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. 
    
  Join the Attorney Network  

CLICK HERE TO JOIN THE ATTORNEY NETWORK /CONTACT US
Helpdesk