Washington, D.C. Qui Tam Attorneys
Besides offering financial incentives, a key way that the government encourages
whistleblowers to report fraud is by offering special legal protections.
The two most important protections the
False Claims Act affords to whistleblowers are protection from retaliation and conditional
Protecting Whistleblowers From Retaliation
Most whistleblowers in qui tam actions are reporting on fraud that has
been committed by their employer or boss. If this employer suspends, demotes,
threatens, or fires the person for actions related to their
whistleblower lawsuit, subsection (h) of the False Claims Act allows whistleblowers
to file a separate case against their employer. In retaliation lawsuits,
any damages recovered are paid directly to the whistleblower. No percentage
will go to the government.
However, in order to ensure you are fully protected under subsection (h),
it is important that you make your whistleblower lawyer aware of any past,
present, or future possibility for retaliation. Additionally, be sure
to let your attorney know if your employment status changes during either
the investigation or the prosecution of your qui tam action, so they can
include a subsection (h) claim in your whistleblower complaint.
Qui tam defendants who violate this law can be held liable for “special
- Double the amount of any back-pay owed to the whistleblower
- Interest on the amount of back-pay
- Re-instatement without the employee’s loss of seniority
Subsection (h) claims are often settled long after the whistleblower lawsuit
has been resolved. The experienced qui tam attorneys at Chaikin, Sherman,
Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. can help you pursue your retaliation claim
even without government intervention.
As a way of pre-emptively avoiding retaliation, the False Claims Act also
provides whistleblowers with conditional anonymity. For at least 60 days
after you file your qui tam lawsuit, your identity will remain confidential
and under seal. Only the Court and the government’s team of investigators
will know who you are.
If the investigation takes longer than sixty days, the Court can extend
the Order to keep your identity a secret. However, the Court’s seal
and your anonymity are not legally guaranteed to stay in place for over
If you have specific information about a fraudulent claim for payment against
the government, please contact our team of experienced attorneys at Chaikin,
Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. for a confidential consultation.
We can help you investigate the situation and protect your rights.