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Federal Whistleblower Attorneys

October 9, 2021

In 1989, the Whistleblower Protection Act (WPA) was implemented to shield federal whistleblower employees from retaliation for exposing governmental waste, illegality and corruption.

Such repercussions could include discrimination against whistleblowers who apply for federal jobs or pay cuts, demotions or replacement for whistleblowers who are federal employees.

Whistleblower Protection Act (WPA)

A whistleblower is someone who lawfully discloses information about corrupt government activities. Here are some examples of what a whistleblower might reveal:

  • Endangerment of public health and safety
  • Abuse of authority
  • Violation of laws, rules and regulations
  • Mismanagement of funds
  • Mismanagement in general
  • Information about waste, abuse and mismanagement
  • Research-related censorship

The WPA prohibits certain federal employees from taking action against employees or employment applicants who receive whistleblower protection under 5 U.S.C. § 2302(b)(8).

Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (WPEA)

In 2012, the WPEA was established to strengthen protections for federal employees who become whistleblowers. The fortified WPEA sets forth the scope of shielded disclosures and establishes that protection against retaliation cannot be revoked for any of the following reasons:

  • Disclosure was made to someone who was complicit in the reported wrongdoings.
  • The wrongs being reported were disclosed previously.
  • Questionable motives exist on the part of the whistleblower.
  • Disclosure occurred when the employee was not on duty.
  • Disclosure occurred while the employee was on duty, but only if the employee can prove that a personnel action was taken in retaliation for that disclosure.
  • Too much time has passed since the reported events occurred.

The WPEA increased penalties for those who violate federal whistleblower protections and created the position of Whistleblower Protection Ombudsman.

In 2013, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) established a pilot program to protect employees of federal contractors, subcontractors, grantees and subgrantees from being demoted, dismissed or discriminated against because they made a protected whistleblower disclosure. In 2016, Congress amended the Act to make these protections permanent.

Whistleblower Ombudsman

Based on the 2012 WPEA, a Whistleblower Ombudsman was appointed to familiarize federal employees with protections granted under the Act. Employees were told that retaliatory measures were illegal and advised of their rights and remedies should retaliation occur.

Characteristics of a Good Whistleblower Case

The strongest whistleblower cases are based on sound and well-documented evidence of serious governmental misconduct or government fraud. Good cases can also be made for those who have suffered retaliation after participating in a protected whistleblower activity.

Whistleblowers are afforded both protections and rewards under the federal and state False Claims Act (FCA). This whistleblower law rewards private citizens who blow the whistle on individuals and entities that knowingly submit false or fraudulent claims for payment to the government.

Good whistleblower cases typically involve these matters:

  • Healthcare fraud
  • Medicare fraud
  • Medicaid fraud
  • Billing fraud related to any federally-funded contract or program

Whistleblower rights cases are complicated. If you believe that your rights have been violated or that you have experienced retaliation, consult with an experienced whistleblower attorney to determine whether you have a case.

Financial Incentives

If you file a federal whistleblower lawsuit involving fraud against the government, you could receive up to 30 percent of the total amount the government recovers.

Whistleblower rewards can be lucrative. If the government receives a recovery of $100 million, you could receive a reward between $15 and $30 million. Government fraud whistleblowers have received rewards of over $2.2 billion to date.

An experienced federal whistleblower lawyer can tell you whether your case merits for a reward. To qualify, you must comply with a series of required steps:

  • Whistleblower lawsuits must be filed by a lawyer.
  • Lawsuits must be filed under seal.
  • Whistleblower lawsuits must be served on the U.S. Attorney General.
  • The lawsuit must include all of the whistleblower’s evidence.
  • Whistleblower lawsuits must be contained on a secret court docket where access is restricted to the government and your lawyer.

Employer Retaliation Protection

The FCA includes strict anti-retaliation measures among its strong whistleblower rights and protections. If you are targeted with consequences for blowing the whistle, you can file a personal lawsuit to receive compensation for any damages that resulted from the retaliation:

  • Recovery of your job
  • Two times the amount of your lost wages
  • Reimbursement for attorneys’ fees and litigation costs
  • Compensation for mental and emotional suffering
  • Compensation for a damaged reputation

An experienced federal whistleblower attorney can help you get all the compensation for which you qualify. Schedule a no-charge consultation now to learn about the merits of your case.

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