Florida workers with knowledge of an employer’s or contractor’s misconduct can take action, even if they find themselves involved. You may have a valid claim, regardless of whether the government joins the case.
According to the National Whistleblower’s Center, qui tam actions allow a person with evidence of fraudulent behavior against federal programs or contracts, known as a whistleblower, to sue the deceitful party on behalf of the U.S. Government. Several statutes address this behavior and provide provisions for anti-retaliation.
Who qualifies as a whistleblower?
Virtually anyone with evidence of misconduct or fraud can be a whistleblower. You may be a current or former employee, contractor or sub-contractor, a public or private employee. You need not have witnessed the fraud, be an American citizen or resident. However, you must file within the statute of limitations, and there cannot already be a lawsuit in progress.
Do you have a whistleblower case?
Qui tam actions are complex and time-consuming. Before filing a lawsuit, there are questions you should ask yourself:
- How do you know about the misconduct?
- Do you know of specific practices or instances that involve fraud?
- Do you have evidence supporting your claim, and if so, how old is it?
- Does your claim meet the particular requirements for a whistleblower claim?
Whether it’s SEC, OSHA, IRS or another program, each one has its own requirements.
How much are qui tam awards?
If the government joins your case, you may receive a reward of 15% to 25% of the amount recovered. If the government declines the case, you may receive an award of up to 30% of the amount recovered. Your compensation depends on various factors, such as the level of detail you provide, the quality and quantity of assistance you provide and whether it involved a meaningful safety concern.