A whistleblower is generally an employee who refuses to engage in, and reports or complains about illegal or wrongful activities, which his/her employer is engaging in. Often, but not always, an employee is protected against retaliation from his/her employer for refusing to engage in unlawful conduct, complaining about unlawful conduct, or reporting unlawful conduct to the proper governmental agency. Laws that protect whistleblowers can be complex, so you should always consult an experienced employment law attorney to determine whether your particular conduct is protected under the law.
Typical Whistleblower Scenarios
There are many laws that protect various types of whistleblowers in Los Angeles, California. Some scenarios where you may be protected from termination in California, Los Angeles include complaining about unlawful discrimination or harassment, complaining about health or safety violations by your employer, reporting illegal conduct to law enforcement, refusing to violate the law, complaining about not being paid properly, complaining about not getting lunch or rest breaks that the law entitles you to, or complaining about your employer defrauding customers. An attorney should always be consulted to determine whether your particular circumstance qualifies you for legal protection. There are far too many possible scenarios to list here where you may be protected by the law as a. Moreover, to a lay person it may seem that the law should protect you, when in actuality it does not. Always consult an attorney.
False Claims Act
Federal and California State laws called False Claims Acts allow individuals to bring suit on behalf of the government and share in a percentage of the recovery for various forms of fraud. These suits brought by private individuals on behalf of the Government are called “Qui Tam” actions. Employees who have knowledge of their employer defrauding the government in any way, should consult with an attorney to determine whether they can bring a Qui Tam action to recover a monetary percentage of the damage to the government caused by the fraud.