Gain Insider Experience from Former High-Ranking Government Officials
Federal whistleblower statutes play a critical role in the government’s efforts to protect the public and prevent fraud, waste, and abuse (FWA). These statutes protect government employees, employees in the private sector, and others who choose to come forward.
Along with protecting whistleblowers against retaliation, these statutes also entitle whistleblowers to financial compensation. In many cases, compensation awards issued under federal whistleblower statutes can be substantial. For example, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issues whistleblower awards starting at $100,000 to $300,000, but it has issued numerous awards in the tens of millions—and even hundreds of millions—of dollars over the decade.
Whistleblower Lawyers Handling All Types of Claims
The SEC is just one of several federal agencies that administer whistleblower programs. But, while there are several opportunities for whistleblowers—and while whistleblowers’ statutory rights and protections are clear—blowing the whistle is not easy. Whistleblowers must strictly adhere to the relevant statutory requirements, and they must be prepared to do what is necessary to see their claims through.
Our whistleblower lawyers represent individuals and groups of individuals in all types of federal whistleblower claims. We have extensive experience in this area, not only as counsel for whistleblowers, but also as federal prosecutors handling whistleblower litigation on behalf of the federal government. As a result of this experience, we are intimately familiar not only with the statutory and procedural requirements for filing a successful whistleblower claim, but also with the practicalities of coming forward as a whistleblower. We represent whistleblowers including:
- CFTC Whistleblowers
- Dodd-Frank Whistleblowers
- FCPA Whistleblowers
- Pharmaceutical Whistleblowers
- Qui Tam Whistleblowers
- SEC Whistleblowers
- SOX Whistleblowers
With our lawyers’ experience as both federal prosecutors and private-sector counsel for whistleblowers, we are able to handle our clients’ claims efficiently while preserving our clients’ statutory rights and protections. We deal with the relevant federal agencies on behalf of our clients at all stages of the process—from filing to intervention, and from the government’s investigation through trial. We work closely with our clients every step of the way, ensuring that they make confident and informed decisions at every stage.
What You Need to Know About Filing a Whistleblower Claim
If you believe that you may have information that qualifies you as a federal whistleblower, what do you need to know? As a whistleblower (or prospective whistleblower), informed decision-making is key. While federal whistleblower statutes provide protections and the right to financial compensation, you can lose these rights if you aren’t careful. Here are some key considerations:
1. It Is Important to Take Action Promptly
First and foremost, it is important to take action promptly. Under all federal whistleblower programs, you must be the first to share information with the government in order to qualify for protections and compensation. If someone else blows the whistle before you, or if the government initiates an investigation before you provide the information you have in your possession, you won’t qualify as a whistleblower.
2. It Is Important to Have an Experienced Federal Whistleblower Lawyer
Not only must you provide the information you have in your possession in a timely manner, but you must also do so in the correct format and through the proper channels. With this in mind, it is important to work with an experienced federal whistleblower lawyer from the earliest stages of the process. At Oberheiden P.C., our lawyers know what it takes to trigger the federal statutory whistleblower protections, and we can work with you to ensure that you meet all pertinent requirements.
3. You Need to Present Sufficient Information to Warrant Further Action
Another key aspect of whistleblowing is that you must present sufficient information to the government to warrant further action. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to have enough information to support a civil enforcement action or criminal indictment, but it does mean that you need to be able to show that there is more digging to do. If the information you provide is sufficient to trigger the government’s duty to investigate, then you are entitled to protection as a whistleblower.
4. You Need to Be Prepared to Work with the Investigating Agency
Blowing the whistle is not a one-time event. Instead, it is a process that involves working with the investigating agency as it determines whether civil or criminal charges are warranted. As a whistleblower (or prospective whistleblower), you must be prepared to offer your cooperation as necessary—and this is another area where having an experienced whistleblower lawyer comes into play.
5. As a Whistleblower, You May Become a Target (But We Can Protect You)
Despite the protections that are in place, as a whistleblower you may still become a target. Those who are affected by your whistleblower complaint may attempt to determine your identity, and they may work to discredit you as part of their defense strategy. While this is unfortunate, it is a reality of the process, and our whistleblower lawyers can use their experience to protect you and your reputation to the fullest extent possible.
Our Services for Federal Whistleblowers (and Prospective Whistleblowers)
We provide full-service legal representation for federal whistleblowers and prospective whistleblowers. Whether you are ready to file a whistleblower complaint or you need to know more about how the process works, we can guide you forward. Our whistleblower lawyers provide services including (but not limited to):
- Determining If You Have Sufficient Information to File a Whistleblower Complaint – Our lawyers will confidentially evaluate the information you have in your possession to determine whether it is sufficient to move forward. If it isn’t, we can work with you to determine what additional information is needed.
- Assisting with Evaluating and Assembling Whistleblower Information – We can assist with determining what information you should provide to the government in your whistleblower complaint. We can also assist with assembling the information you have in your possession in order to provide it to the federal government.
- Advising Whistleblowers Regarding Their Rights and Obligations – Our lawyers can clearly explain your legal rights under the relevant federal whistleblower statute. We can also explain your obligations—including any contractual or other obligations that may apply to your collection of information.
- Dealing with the Federal Government Throughout the Process – From submitting your whistleblower complaint to working with federal agents during their investigation, we can deal with the government on your behalf throughout the process.
- Securing Whistleblower Compensation From the Government – If your whistleblower complaint leads to a federal enforcement action, we can also deal with the government to secure the whistleblower compensation you are entitled to receive. Our lawyers will work to ensure that you receive full compensation based on whether the government chose to intervene.
FAQs: Filing a Federal Whistleblower Complaint
How Do I File a Federal Whistleblower Complaint?
Filing a federal whistleblower complaint involves several steps, and the specific steps you need to take depend on the agency with which you intend to file your complaint. Our whistleblower lawyers handle complaints with all federal agencies, and we can explain the relevant process to you during your complimentary initial consultation.
Which Federal Agencies Accept Whistleblower Complaints?
Multiple federal agencies accept whistleblower complaints from their employees and from individuals in the private sector. These include the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), among others. If you have information that you believe may warrant federal enforcement action, our whistleblower lawyers can determine to which agency you should submit your complaint.
What Protections Am I Entitled to Receive As a Whistleblower?
Generally speaking, whistleblowers are entitled to confidentiality (at least initially) and protection against retaliation. However, the specific protections to which you are entitled as a whistleblower depend on the specific federal statute that applies. If you are thinking about blowing the whistle and have concerns about the repercussions of doing so, our lawyers can explain the law so that you can make an informed decision.
How Much Compensation Am I Entitled to Receive As a Whistleblower?
The amount of compensation you are entitled to receive as a whistleblower depends on several factors, including: (i) the federal agency with which you file your complaint; (ii) whether the agency intervenes and pursues enforcement action; and, (iii) whether your complaint leads to monetary penalties or other moneys collected. Under the SEC’s whistleblower program, for example, whistleblowers are entitled to between 10% and 30% of the moneys collected when their complaints lead to sanctions of $1 million or more.
Do I Need to Hire a Federal Whistleblower Lawyer?
Due to the complexity of the federal whistleblower programs and the potential risks of failing to secure protection as a whistleblower, it is strongly in your best interests to seek legal representation. When doing so, you will want to choose a lawyer who has specific experience handling federal whistleblower claims.
Contact the Federal Whistleblower Lawyers at Oberheiden P.C.
If you need to know more about filing a federal whistleblower claim, we invite you to get in touch. To schedule an appointment with a federal whistleblower lawyer at Oberheiden P.C., call 888-680-1745 or contact us confidentially online today.
Further Information About Our Whistleblower Services
- Average Whistleblower Settlement
- CFTC Whistleblower
- CIA Whistleblower Attorney
- DOD/Defense Contract Whistleblower Attorney
- Dodd-Frank Whistleblower
- DOJ Whistleblower Attorney
- False Claims Whistleblower Attorney
- FCPA Whistleblower
- FDA Whistleblower Attorney
- Government Contractor Whistleblower Attorney
- Healthcare Whistleblower Attorney
- Healthcare Whistleblower Protection Act
- HHS Whistleblower Attorney
- IRS/Tax Whistleblower Attorney
- NSA Whistleblower Attorney
- Pharmaceutical Whistleblower
- Qui Tam Whistleblower
- Railroad Whistleblower Attorney
- SEC Whistleblower
- Securities Whistleblower Attorney
- SOX Whistleblower
- Tax Evasion Whistleblower
- Wall Street Whistleblower Attorney
- What Happens if a Whistleblower is Wrong?
- What is the Whistleblower Protection Act?