A qui tam lawsuit—also known as a whistleblower lawsuit—is a legal action pursued by a private citizen on behalf of the government against a company or corporation that is engaging in fraud. The government loses millions of dollars every year due to fraud, whether it’s via health-related programs like Medicare and Medicaid, insurance scams, and over-billing for contract work. Qui tam lawsuits are designed to make it easier for the government to identify and crack down on fraud by giving private citizens the power to expose it and be rewarded for their whistleblowing. These types of cases can be complex: both confusing and frustrating. The average person is not sure how to go about bringing a Qui Tam case against the government or their employer. That is where the Cookeville, TN Qui Tam & Whistleblower Attorneys can help.
Contact Matt Hardin Law. Our Cookeville qui tam lawyers know that the prospect of working with an attorney and even the government to file a lawsuit against your employer can seem intimidating. But it’s important to note that the qui tam lawsuit process protects whistleblowers from having their identities exposed while evidence is gathered, and if the lawsuit proceeds and is made public, their employers are forbidden from retaliating.
You Can Pursue Damages If Your Employer Retaliates
When you initially approach an attorney to discuss a qui tam lawsuit, your name will be kept confidential throughout the entire process. From the time you first speak with a law firm and present evidence to the time that your attorney begins his or her investigation and forwards the case to the government, you won’t have to worry about your employer discovering your actions as a whistleblower.
If the government decides to pursue action against your employer, your name will become public and your activities may become known to your superiors. And although employers are forbidden from retaliating against employees who expose fraud on behalf of the government, it’s not unheard of. Thankfully, whistleblowers are eligible to fight back with lawsuits that seek to obtain damages for retaliation.
The Cookeville qui tam lawyers at Matt Hardin Law handle both qui tam lawsuits and retaliation claims for things like:
Termination and industry blacklisting
For many workers, fear of losing their job is just the tip of the iceberg, as employer reprisal could result in attempts to blacklist them from similar jobs. Our attorneys will fight to make sure that your name is protected and your reputation remains intact if your employer retaliates.
Demotions, reduced pay, and reduced hours
Your status as an employee is protected when you file a qui tam lawsuit. That means any actions that strip you of your title, reduce your pay, or cut your hours can be considered retaliation. We’ll work hard to help you get reinstated to your previous title and full pay and benefits.
Disciplinary actions, harassment, and workplace bullying
Even if your job remains intact and your pay remains the same, your employer may still violate the protection that whistleblowers receive by singling you out for things like disciplinary actions, harassment, and intimidation. These actions can create a hostile work environment and may be designed to make you leave the company. Don’t let this happen without speaking to an attorney.
Your Reward Could Be Up to 50 Percent, So Act Now
If the government decides to take on your case itself, you can receive anywhere from 15 to 25 percent of the money it recovers, depending on the amount of evidence and work you and your attorney did when gathering evidence and presenting the case. Tennessee’s False Claims Act increases that percentage up to 33 percent for whistleblowers.
And if the government passes on the lawsuit and you and your attorney continue to pursue it, a successful outcome can net you anywhere from 35 percent to 50 percent of the recovered assets. However, you’re only eligible for these rewards if you’re the first to file the qui tam lawsuit. And chances are, if you’re aware of fraudulent activity, someone else is, too. In addition, it’s also important to avoid speaking to anyone about your potential qui tam lawsuit other than your attorney, as doing so can put the case in jeopardy.
Don’t wait to file a lawsuit and lose your opportunity to get the reward you deserve. Get in touch with the experienced Cookeville, TN Personal Injury Attorneys at Matt Hardin Law today for your personal injury or Qui Tam case. Call us today at (931) 754-1188 or fill out a free online consultation form.