There are certain laws in the U.S. that encourage whistleblowers to report cases of fraud that have been committed against the U.S. government and protect them from retaliation from the accused when they step forward to make their claims. The federal False Claims Act allows for actions against these individuals who are believed to have committed fraud based on the information supplied by the whistleblower. If successful, these actions, known as qui tam lawsuits, may entitle a whistleblower to a portion of the recovery obtained for the government.
Both state and federal False Claims Acts bar a company from harassing or reacting against an employee for trying to uncover fraud or for reporting known cases of fraud against the government. If an employer does retaliate, the whistleblower may be entitled to receive money for attorneys’ fees, back pay, and litigation costs. However, the specific amount of damages will depend on the circumstances surrounding the case.
Successful qui tam lawsuits have been filed against many individuals such as defense contractors, research scientists, doctors, nurses, and others. Anyone who believes that he or she has inside knowledge about fraud committed against the government has the potential to participate in a qui tam lawsuit. Cases have been brought for:
- Overbilling the government for services or goods
- Billing for goods not received or services not provided
- Making false statements to avoid paying a debt owed to the government
- Manipulating procedures to overcharge the government
- Preparing false records or statements to receive payment for a fraudulent claim
Recent amendments to the False Claims Act are encouraging whistleblower lawsuits and have increased the pool of potential defendants and removed obstacles to private whistleblower claims. Most recently, the Consumer Protection Act and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform were adopted into the Securities and Exchange Commission program by the U.S. Congress.
If you are considering working with a Colorado whistleblower lawyer, he or she may also inform you of a law that rewards whistleblowers for reporting tax cheats against the government. Under the program that was developed by the Internal Revenue Service, a whistleblower may be entitled to receive 15 to 30 percent of the amount collected by the IRS following the tax fraud report.
Do You Need a Colorado Whistleblower Lawyer? We Can Help
If you feel that you are eligible to participate in a qui tam lawsuit or if you wish to retain a Colorado whistleblower lawyer to assist you throughout the legal process, contact Attorney Group for Colorado today to learn more. There is no cost to speak with us, and we can help you to understand the options that may be available to you. We can also connect you with an affiliated Colorado whistleblower lawyer can further assist you.