Florida Government Contract Fraud Whistleblower Lawyer
Have you discovered government contract fraud in your workplace? Are you considering reporting it but not sure what to do next? Are you concerned about the personal and professional consequences and retaliation you may face for reporting the fraud? If so, we can help.
At Yormak Employment Law, we recognize the courage it takes to report fraud and the concerns that come with it. With our proven history of standing by whistleblowers, you can trust us to champion your cause. We’re committed to helping you get compensated for your bravery and ensuring that your rights are protected throughout the process. Contact us now for a free consultation.
What Is Government Contract Fraud?
Government contract fraud happens when an individual or company intentionally deceives the federal government to profit from an agreement. This fraudulent behavior can include overcharging for goods or services, failing to deliver on contract terms, misrepresenting costs, using substandard material, or violating standard regulations, among other dishonest practices.
Fraud leads to financial loss for the government and, by extension, taxpayers. Even minor cases of government contract fraud can have a ripple effect – from the honest companies that lose out on contracts due to unfair competition to the citizens who rely on public services.
Applying The False Claims Act to Fraud Against the Government
The FCA allows private individuals, often called “relators” or “whistleblowers,” to file lawsuits on behalf of the government against entities that are believed to be defrauding the government. This is known as a “qui tam” action. If the government decides to intervene and take over the lawsuit, and if the lawsuit is successful, the whistleblower may be entitled to a portion of the recovered funds.
The FCA also provides protection against retaliation for whistleblowers. Employers are prohibited from discharging, demoting, suspending, threatening, or discriminating against an employee in terms and conditions of employment because of lawful acts done by the employee in furtherance of an FCA action.
Who Can Report Government Contract Fraud?
Anyone with evidence of government contract fraud can report it. This includes employees of companies involved in fraudulent activities, competitors who lost a contract opportunity, and even members of the public who become aware of illegal misconduct.
Potential Rewards for Government Contract Fraud Whistleblowers
Taking a stand against fraud in government contracts is a brave decision that can lead to significant financial rewards.
Under the FCA, whistleblowers who file successful lawsuits are entitled to a portion of the funds recovered. This typically ranges from 15 to 30% of the total recovery. The exact percentage depends on the quality of whistleblower cases, successful Qui Tam actions, and whether the information provided was public knowledge.
Whistleblowers play a crucial role in holding fraudulent contractors accountable. By reporting fraud, you’re helping protect taxpayer dollars, ensuring fair competition, and upholding public trust in government operations.
Common Types of Government Contract Fraud
While government fraud can take many forms, certain types of misconduct are more common than others. Here are some of the most frequent types of fraud whistleblowers report:
Violations of the Davis-Bacon Act
The Davis-Bacon Act mandates that contractors and subcontractors pay those employed under contract for services provided based on what workers earn in the same locality for similar types of work.
Some contractors violate this act by underpaying workers, falsifying records, or misclassifying workers to pay lower rates. If you’ve witnessed similar labor violations, Yormak Employment Law can help you report wrong conduct and ensure you are under whistleblower protection.
Use of Bribery/Fraudulent Means to Obtain a Government Contract
Bribery to secure government contracts is another common form of fraud. This involves procurement fraud such as kickbacks, bid-rigging, false claims, or other corrupt practices that undermine fair competition and inflate contract prices.
If you are sure about having evidence pointing to illicit activities, acting as soon as possible is important before the case becomes known by the government by other whistleblowers and you lose eligibility for rewards. Reach out to a whistleblower lawyer to ensure the evidence is quickly addressed.
Violation of the Truth in Negotiation Act (TINA)
The Truth in Negotiation Act (TINA) requires contractors to disclose cost or pricing data for negotiated procurement. This transparency ensures that the government pays fair prices for contracted goods or services.
Violations occur when contractors provide false or incomplete information. As an employee privy to such violations, coming forward can help rectify these wrongs and potentially recover significant funds for the government.
Reallocate/Conceal Costs or Financial Statements
Contractors sometimes use dishonest accounting practices to increase profits, including cross-charging and fraudulent billing. This could involve reallocating costs from one contract to another, concealing documents, or falsifying financial statements.
Such dishonest practices camouflage the true cost of a contract and make the government overpay for services or goods.
As a whistleblower, you might be concerned about potential retaliation from your employer. These fears are valid and shared among people blowing the whistle on fraud in government contracts. Nonetheless, remember that the law is on your side.
The False Claims Act (FCA) shields whistleblowers from retaliation. Employers are prohibited from firing, harassing, demoting, threatening, or discriminating against employees who report fraud in government contracts.
This protection extends to actions taken in the workplace and any other adverse changes that may affect the terms and conditions of your employment.
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
At Yormak Employment Law, we understand the weight of your decision. That’s why we offer a free, confidential consultation to discuss your situation, answer your questions, and provide the information you need to make an informed decision.
As a board-certified expert in employment law with experience in whistleblower cases, our lead attorney, Benjamin Yormak, is uniquely qualified to guide you with a proven track record of successfully representing whistleblower claims in federal court.
Don’t let fear or uncertainty hold you back. Contact Yormak Employment & Disability Law today for your free consultation. Let’s work together to bring fraudulent practices to light and hold those responsible accountable.