Whistleblowing Laws in California and Qui Tam Lawsuits
Los Angeles Whistleblower Attorney Helps File Qui Tam Whistleblower Claims
The government loses billions of dollars every year to fraudulent actions by contractors and companies. With this knowledge, the Department of Justice and other watchdog agencies rely on California whistleblowers to alert them of any ongoing acts of fraud by those doing business with the government.
Although a person may blow the whistle to stop a company’s wrongdoing, there are whistleblowing laws in California that also provide significant financial rewards for helping stop fraud against the government. Qui tam lawsuits are a type of whistleblowing case under the False Claims Act where whistleblowers may gain a reward if the qui tam lawsuit recovers government funds.
Whistleblowing laws in California provide whistleblower protection, but whistleblowing can still by risky. If your company is committing fraud against the government, speak with a Los Angeles whistleblower attorney at Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob before you attempt to report or expose the fraudulent activity. With over four decades of experience dealing with workplace issues just like these, a Los Angeles whistleblower attorney at our firm can explain the process of resolving this delicate situation and provide insight on your whistleblower protections. A whistleblower attorney can guide you through suing under the False Claims Act and what evidence the government needs to investigate fraud allegations.
California Qui Tam Whistleblower Protections and Compensation
The government recognizes that whistleblowers undertake immense personal and professional risks by reporting their employer’s fraudulent actions. In light of this, whistleblowing laws provide whistleblower protection and possible financial rewards to employees who have reasonable cause of violations or noncompliance with federal or California rules.
The False Claims Act, also known as Lincoln’s law, allows a private citizen or employee to file suit against anyone actively and intentionally defrauding the government. These actions are called qui tam lawsuits.
Thousands of California whistleblowing cases have resulted in successful qui tam lawsuits that rewarded employees who took the risk of reporting fraud and recovered funds for the government. The False Claims Act provides the following protections and benefits for whistleblowers:
- Employee whistleblower protection – Many qui tam whistleblowing cases are handled “under seal,” meaning that the Department of Justice investigates the fraud in secret until more information is gathered. This allows an employee to report illegal acts without fear of their actions being disclosed.
- Monetary compensation – Qui tam whistleblowing cases are typically closed through settlements, although they can go to trial if need be. Once a settlement or verdict is given, the whistleblowing employee could receive up to 30 percent of the recovered money.
For whistleblowers in Los Angeles, whistleblowing laws in California include California Labor Code Section 1102.5 and Senate Bill (SB) 496. These laws for whistleblowers prohibit employers in California from retaliating against workers who report state or federal law violations or who internally or externally report law violations. SB 496 also prohibits the establishment of any employer policies that may prevent workers from whistleblowing, among other legal protections for California whistleblowers.
What Does a Whistleblower Do?
There have been many different types of whistleblowing cases, as companies or individuals can perpetrate different types of unlawful and illegal practices against the California or federal government. Some common whistleblowing cases usually involve one or more of these acts of fraud:
- Submitting invoices for services and products that were not provided
- Avoiding taxes or licensing fees
- Withholding payments or reimbursements to customers
- Engaging in discriminatory or unlawful hiring practices
If you have been witness to any of these practices in your workplace, get whistleblower protection and talk to a Los Angeles whistleblower attorney about how to proceed.
Whistleblower Attorney in Los Angeles Protecting California Whistleblowers from Retaliation
Whistleblowing laws in California provide avenues for whistleblowers to report fraud safely without fear of retaliation from employers. Possible acts of whistleblower retaliation in the workplace by employers includes wrongful termination, demoting, threatening, harassing or suspending workers who blow the whistle by disclosing information of public concern to government agencies.
If you are considering whistleblowing, it is essential that you have experienced legal counsel on your side. To protect your rights and your career, contact a Los Angeles whistleblower attorney at our California employment law firm today.