Legal Protection when Employees Blow the Whistle on Fraud and Misrepresentation
Helping California whistleblowers collect damages for exposing companies that cheat the government
The federal government and the state of California need help exposing fraud. Many businesses that contract with government overcharge, provide substandard services, create false accounts, double bill, and commit other wrongs all to gain financially. There are many laws that encourage employees and anyone who knows about theft, deception, and other illegal practices to disclose that conduct to the proper authorities. The main encouragement is that whistleblowers who qualify can receive a significant percentage of any recovery. The Department of Justice recently reported that $4.7 billion was recovered under the False Claims Act, just one of many whistleblower laws, in the fiscal 2016 year.
At the law offices of Stephen Danz & Associates, we know how much courage and resolve it takes to file a whistleblower claim – especially against your own employer. Our California whistleblower attorneys have extensive experience helping whistleblowers gain recoveries. We understand who can file, what notice requirements must be met, and when and how to work with the Department of Justice and other enforcement agencies.
Our work in whistleblowing cases has been recognized by the profession at large. The nationally recognized Civil False Claims and Qui Tam Actions Handbook, for instance, offers one of our multimillion-dollar whistleblower lawsuits as a model to be followed by attorneys around the nation.
Types of fraud whistleblowers expose
Fraud happens in most every government service sector. Our California whistleblower lawyers advise whistleblowers in the following types of fraud cases
- Defense contractor fraud
- Medicare and Medicaid fraud
- Pharmaceutical fraud
- Tax fraud
- Securities fraud
Fraud can also occur in the financial services sector, mortgages, nursing homes, education, and government grants. The ability to recover depends on the relevant statutes
The main whistleblower laws
The ability to collect a percentage of any damage award depends on the law that applies to the fraud being exposed. Our Los Angeles and statewide whistleblower litigation attorneys also advise clients that most statutes have retaliation provisions. These provisions provide that employers cannot retaliate against an employee for exposing fraud. We demand reinstatement, back pay, civil penalties, legal fees, and other damages when employers retaliate.
The main whistleblower laws are:
- The False Claims Act. This law permits plaintiffs, called qui-tam plaintiffs, to file claims against defendants that are committing specific types of fraud against the government. The qui-tam plaintiff must disclose relevant information to the Department of Justice. After an investigation, the DOJ decides if it will pursue the case or not. The plaintiff can pursue the case on its own if the DOJ decides not to take the case.
At Stephen Danz & Associates, our lawyers work aggressively to prepare your case properly for DOJ review. We then work with the DOJ to prosecute the case or, if the case is denied, we are ready to pursue whistleblower cases independently when the case is strong enough. The amount of any recovery depends on whether the DOJ takes the case or not, the amount the person or business cheated the government, and any civil penalties that apply. The percentage the whistleblower gets normally ranges from 15 to 25%.
- SEC and CFTC whistleblower laws. The Financial Reform Act more formally called the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, also has its own whistleblower laws for fraud involving either the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). The amount of the fraud has to be one million dollars or more. If the action against the individual or business succeeds, the whistleblower can be rewarded 10% to 30% of the sums recovered. SEC and CFTC fraud includes insider trading, violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and other transgressions.
- IRS fraud. The Internal Revenue Service has its own Whistleblower Provisions which encourage people to disclose tax underpayments and violations of the IRS rules. The amount in dispute has to be quite substantial before any recovery will be allowed. Our attorneys know how much money has to be in dispute to justify a recover. The IRS whistleblower laws apply to individual and corporate taxpayers.
There are whistleblower laws for other governmental services such as the federal stimulus program and the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP).
Make sure you have an experienced California whistleblower attorney on your side
At the offices of Stephen Danz & Associations, our lawyers understand how frightening a whistleblower action can be. Employees and other whistleblowers wonder if their identity will be revealed and if the employer will try to retaliate. They worry if they are making the disclosures to the right people at the right time in the right way.
Rest assured that our California whistleblower attorneys can answer your questions, calm your fears, and present your case properly to the authorities and in court. If you suspect government fraud, please call our firm for a free consultation. You can reach us at (877)-789-9707 or fill out our contact form. We see clients in all major California cities such as Los Angeles, Pasadena, Encino, San Francisco, Sacramento, Santa Rosa, Fresno, Irvine, San Diego, San Bernardino and Simi Valley.