The False Claims Act is one of the most powerful and successful laws that the government has ever enacted to help them to protect themselves against fraud. The act empowers and incents American citizens to act as whistleblowers and report unethical activity when they see it happening, and it does this by offering those who file reports the ability to earn a generous reward if their claims are proven true. Making the decision to be a “relator” – a person who reports wrongdoing – may offer the possibility of financial gain, but it also comes with its share of risk. It is well known that those who file a claim under the False Claims Act often experience retaliation from those about whom they’ve filed a report, especially when the bad actor is their employer. It is important to understand that relation is against the law under the False Claims Act’s Anti-Retaliation Provision. A false claims attorney can protect you from these illegal actions by employers and others involved. Call the False Claims attorneys at Bochetto & Lentz today to see how we can make sure that you are getting all of the protections and rights that the law offers.
There are a number of different ways that employers may attempt to prevent you from testifying or providing information about them, or to retaliate against you for having done so. Some of these methods include:
- Termination of employment
- Suspension of employment
- Discrimination within the work environment
Though an employee who has filed a False Claims Act may anticipate acts of retaliation, and may even suspect that they are going on, there are certain elements of proof needed when filing a claim of retaliation. The employee must be able to show that they had filed or participated in a False Claims Act claim, that their employer knew about their involvement, and that the employer acted against them as a result of the False Claims Act activities. It is important to note that the law does not only provide the anti-retaliation protections to the actual relator. Any employee who can show that they were acting “in furtherance” of an action – which can include conducting their own investigation of internal activities without having actually filed a False Claims Act claim – can pursue an anti-retaliation claim if they feel that as a result of their activities, the company is punishing or harassing them.
If you believe that you have been the victim of retaliation for your False Claims Act activities, you are not only entitled to protection, but also to certain damages which may include reinstatement of a previous position at the same title and status, double the pay that had been missed plus interest, plus compensation for litigation costs, reasonable attorneys’ fees, and other special damages. Don’t hesitate to contact us to right this wrong – contact the attorneys at Bochetto & Lentz today.
Learn more from our False Claims Attorney HERE.