If you expose your organization’s unethical or illegal act – whether it’s a threat to public interest, violation of company rules/policy, fraud or corruption – you may be subject to discrimination or even wrongful termination from your employer. While it is within your rights to bring allegations or information to notice, the consequences can have a toll on you, especially when your employer chooses to retaliate against you. In such a case, it is essential to consult with a qualified employment lawyer, like Ravi Sattiraju, to be aware of your rights as an employee, and the best course of action that you can take if such issues arise.
Why you need an attorney
Whistleblower cases are complex just as they are stressful; it can be hard for an average Joe to navigate through all the requirements and procedures. In fact, a majority of employees who choose to represent themselves end up giving up halfway – and it’s perhaps why many employers continue to take advantage. A whistleblower lawyer is well-versed with the litigation process as well as other considerations. They will present a strong, well-filed lawsuit that will nudge the government to be part of the investigation to improve your chances of receiving a monetary award for reporting violation or fraud. Additionally, the lawyer can also help protect your anonymity and cover you against retaliation. But that’s not all, here are more reasons why employment lawyers are an invaluable part of your suit:
You lawyer will assess all the supporting evidence, and provide advice regarding the best possible course of action that you can take. Depending on how strong your case is, they may advise you to obtain extra documentation, recommend that you report the incident internally or take some other action prior to filing a lawsuit.
File a lawsuit
If you have a qui tam case, the attorney will file a claim in the federal court highlighting how the organization or company is defrauding the government. But if it’s not a qui tam case, and involves tax or security fraud, you may have to file your claim, but you’ll need to report under the appropriate whistleblower program.
Be by your side
You should know that the process can be so much involving, it would be overwhelming to do it alone. Your whistleblower lawyer will be with you every step of the way, whether it’s accompanying you to meeting with the government representatives or help prepare you for the potential questions that will be asked. The lawyer will also ensure you get maximum relator award.
Protect your identity
If you wish to remain anonymous throughout the process, your whistleblower attorney will do everything within their power to protect your identity. But still, the law prohibits your employer from discharging, suspending, demoting, threatening, harassing or discriminating again you for filing a whistleblower lawsuit – so it shouldn’t be a bother. But if they still go ahead and do just that, your lawyer may file a claim against the employer, seeking compensation for lost wages, reinstatement, and more.