If you have witnessed illegal activity being done by an employer or employee, you can count on a whistleblower lawyer who serves Washington, DC residents to provide their full legal support. These unique situations put individuals in a difficult position, and in many cases, they can lead to serious consequences. However, whistleblowers are granted rights under the law that they are allowed to exercise. When you are seeking specialized legal services to depend on after reporting such activities, you can depend on a trusted and highly qualified legal professional to help you.
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Handling a whistleblower case on your own comes with risks. With such an incredibly difficult type of legal case, you should explore your legal options and get the necessary help you need. The accomplished and qualified team at Eric Siegel Law is highly familiar with whistleblower cases. With their decades of experience, they have provided legal counsel for many clients who have reported or witnessed illegal activity in their workplace by a manager or fellow employee. Request legal assistance from a lawyer who can provide you with personalized legal advice.
There are numerous advantages to hiring a whistleblower lawyer who provides services to Washington, DC residents. It is crucial to understand your rights as a whistleblower, and a lawyer can help you understand them. They can explain to you the information that you need to know, and can develop a strategy so that you can obtain positive case results. If there are damages that you can recover, a whistleblower lawyer in Washington, DC like one at Eric Siegel Law can help you obtain them. You do not need to go through the stress of a whistleblower case alone and can count on a lawyer to be at your side.
There are many types of scenarios that whistleblowers can get involved in. Any criminal offense committed by an individual, organization, or government entity can be reported by a whistleblower. Because these cases often involve large companies, governmental bodies, or organizations, they are usually highly complex and intricate. Whistleblower lawyers deal with many types of cases, which includes the following types of activities:
The main concern that many whistleblowers often report to lawyers is the fear of retaliation. They are worried that their employer or the organization that they reported will find out what they have done and retaliate against them through a penalty or other serious consequences. Fortunately, it is illegal to retaliate against whistleblowers. A lawyer will ensure that you have the protection you need to move forward in the process.
As a whistleblower lawyer, Washington DC employees recommend will share, the act of coming forward and exposing wrongdoing on the part of a company is a heroic act. However, despite this, whistleblowers often experience backlash from taking action in reporting abuse and corruption. Unfortunately, although illegal, retaliation after a whistleblower engages in an employee-protected act is quite common. Victims of retaliation can face consequences as a result, but it’s essential to know that it may be possible to seek legal recourse with help from Eric Siegel Law. Victims may receive compensation for the damages they have experienced as a result of workplace retaliation. To ensure a clear understanding of the options, contact our firm as soon as possible.
Understanding whistleblower protections can be overwhelming and complicated because different protections and incentives are in place depending upon the grievance and the industry sector. While there are several laws in place, the most prominent is The False Claims Act (FCA) which includes the qui tam provision, which allows individuals or non-governmental entities to file a lawsuit on behalf of the U.S. Government. In addition, whistleblowers can receive rewards for making disclosures regarding missteps that resulted in a loss to the U.S. Government. In addition, whistleblowers are also protected from retaliation because this type of behavior is illegal. Employees may experience job loss, poor treatment, demotions, negative performance reviews, etc. Because of this, it’s possible to have a clear plan in place with help from a Washington DC, whistleblower lawyer.
As a whistleblower lawyer Washington, DC clients depend on at Eric Siegel Law knows, most employers have regularly scheduled meetings or training to keep their teams current on company goals and initiatives. Employers may try to sabotage or isolate employees by purposefully excluding them from such gatherings. If you all of a sudden have been left out of meetings that you previously got invited to attend, you may be the target of workplace retaliation. Your boss may be trying to set you up for failure and make you feel disconnected from your coworkers who are still being invited to meetings or training.
Usually, we have a general idea of how we are doing at work. We know deep down whether our performance has been great, or not so great. Receiving an unfairly negative performance review is never fun, but your boss must always rationalize their evaluation. If your boss seems to go out of their way to give you feedback that is unduly negative, without giving you constructive feedback, they may be engaging in retaliation against you. Reviews about performance are used to justify promotions, raises, and terminations. Performance reviews that are immensely negative, without true grounds for it, maybe a strategy so that employers can deny advancement or defend their reasoning for why you are being fired.
There are only so many promotional opportunities available in the workplace. You may have worked hard to solidify being given a raise or a new desired position. Despite your efforts and exceeding performance, you may notice that you still cannot seem to land a promotion. Employers may prevent someone from advancing for discriminatory reasons. Employers may retaliate against workers by denying them promised or expected promotions. As your DC whistleblower lawyer may explain, this form of retaliation can be difficult to prove, particularly if your employer has been distorting your performance reviews for quite some time.
While most people do not like to take on more work than is expected of them, sometimes doing so is necessary. But an employer may retaliate against a worker by requiring them to do significantly more without any raise in pay. Such expectations may come with excuses as to why you have to be the one to take them on. Your boss should not be forcing you to do more responsibilities without increasing your compensation. Keep in mind that an employer can ask an employer to do more without an increase in pay at times, but you must be wary if you appear to be singled out or if the amount of added work is unreasonable.
Your DC whistleblower lawyer may ask if you were previously happy with your job but now find yourself constantly thinking about leaving. Ask yourself why this may be. Has your boss been treating you adversely? Have you been separated from your coworkers, moved to a different department that is less desirable, asked to do more work, or denied chances at promotions that you objectively deserve? Consider why you may be feeling miserable, and if something seems off in the worst way, then now is the time to meet with a lawyer for protection.
Did You Quit Voluntarily?
If you’ve hesitated to connect with a reputable Washington, DC whistleblower lawyer because you quit your job voluntarily, it’s time to pick up the phone. If you felt compelled to quit your job because of discriminatory, harassment-based, or retaliatory treatment that made your workplace intimidating or abusive, you may still have a cause of action even if you weren’t fired or laid off.
The main reason why the Eric Siegel Law prides itself on offering risk-free consultations is that we believe that all hard-working people deserve to understand their rights under the law. If you’re potentially in a position to hold your employer accountable for either creating or failing to address a hostile work environment, you deserve to understand your options.
What Is Constructive Discharge?
As our Washington, DC whistleblower lawyer team can explain in greater detail during your consultation, constructive discharge is a term that is used to describe the situation briefly outlined above. Essentially, when a hostile work environment develops and an affected employee is compelled to quit as a result of those circumstances, their employer can potentially be held legally and financially responsible for either creating that situation or failing to address it adequately.
“Hostile work environment” is a legal term with specific connotations. For circumstances to be treated as a hostile work environment by the courts and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), they must be such that a reasonable person would find them to be abusive, intimidating, or otherwise hostile. That “hostility” must generally be rooted in conduct that can be classified as unlawfully discriminatory, harassing, or retaliatory.
If you quit your job because you were being subjected to either egregious or ongoing non-egregious treatment that a reasonable person would perceive as hostile, it’s time to connect with Eric Siegel Law to learn more about your rights.
Have You Been Offered Severance?
If you quit your job and were offered some kind of a buyout, don’t sign any paperwork until an attorney has reviewed the terms of this offer. By signing any kind of buyout or severance agreement, you’ll almost certainly sign away your right to file legal action against your employer in the future. Such terms could tie your hands when it comes to holding your employer accountable for misconduct and securing any and all compensation that you deserve that exceeds the value detailed by the severance agreement. Call us first and do so quickly, as your employer has probably given you less than a week to review the proposal before you’ll either need to accept it or reject it.
How Can You Protect Your Rights While Your Case Remains Active?
Right now, you’re probably feeling the urge to vent. Don’t do so online or via text or email. These communications may potentially be used against you as your case evolves. Also, if you need to vent, don’t do so to your co-workers until you’ve spoken with our Washington, DC whistleblower lawyer team about the merits of your case. Depending upon your circumstances, you may need to move forward with the greatest possible discretion.
While, at times, retaliation can be blatant, there are also subtleties to this type of treatment. It’s essential to take the proper steps as quickly as possible to safeguard the case. In addition to working with an experienced lawyer, it will take gathering evidence to support the claim to ensure the best possible outcome. Victims of retaliation after whistleblowing should:
Retaliation can not only impact victims emotionally, but it can also have a financial impact on them if they have experienced job loss, pay cuts, demotions, or reduced hours. Because of this, it may be possible to pursue a legal case against the employer for damages that encompass loss of pay, emotional damages, and more.
In 2021, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) awarded more than $564 million to 108 whistleblowers. This is the highest amount of money awarded to whistleblowers in a single year by the SEC. The SEC’s whistleblower program is designed to encourage people to come forward with information about securities fraud. Whistleblowers who provide information that leads to a successful enforcement action can receive a reward of up to 30% of the money recovered by the SEC.
Despite the several whistleblower protections in place for those who come forward, our Washington, DC whistleblower lawyer will share that blowing the whistle is still considered controversial. Whistleblowers, at times, may be viewed as heroes, but in other situations, they may not always be cast in the best light. Often whistleblowers expose organizations for crimes, fraud, unethical activities, etc. Because of this, they may be left to face backlash, not only from their organization but also from the general public, should their case become highly publicized. In addition, whistleblowers face other personal consequences that may impact their ability to retain employment within their industry. While this form of retaliation is illegal, it still takes place today, so those considering coming forward should seek representation from a firm like Eric Siegel Law.
The following is a dive into some of the most high-profile whistleblower cases that have taken place throughout history and in recent years:
One of the more recent whistleblower cases that have received significant exposure is the Theranos scandal. The case initially broke in 2015 when whistleblowers Erika Cheung and Tyler Schultz, two entry-level lab technicians, began sharing information with Wall Street Journal reporter John Carreyrou. Elizabeth Holmes, the company’s CEO, claimed the company provided fast, convenient blood testing with a single stick. The Edison machine was intended to test for various medical issues. There was only one problem; the machine didn’t actually work. As a result, Elizabeth Holmes was sentenced to 11 years for defrauding investors. Her COO, Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, has been found guilty of 12 fraud charges but is still awaiting sentencing.
Our DC whistleblower lawyer will share that one of the most famous Whitehouse scandals to date is the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal which whistleblower Linda Tripp exposed. Linda Tripp exposed the affair that took place between Bill Clinton and Whitehouse intern Monica Lewinsky when she provided information to prosecutor Kenneth Starr. Tripp is often received with mixed reviews because she ascertained information about the affair by secretly recording extensive phone conversations between herself and Lewinsky. In these calls, Lewinsky detailed her affair with Clinton. As a result, Tripp retaliated against when the Department of Defense illegally shared a file for her role in the scandal. Tripp took legal action and received a favorable outcome, resulting in retroactive pay and a retroactive promotion.
Enron, an energy trading company, was one of the largest companies in the US back in the early 2000s. Whistleblower Sherron Watkins discovered accounting irregularities and promptly alerted company CEO Ken Lay. As a result, Enron almost immediately crumbled. However, thousands of employees were impacted by the collapse of Enron in 2000 as a result of a financial scandal where executives intentionally inflated revenues. Today, Enron is still seen as one of the biggest accounting scandals in history.
One of the most critical steps a whistleblower can take is to find an experienced lawyer who represents them and puts their interests first. While there are legal protections in place, whistleblowers can experience severe backlash due to coming forward. Learn more about how our DC whistleblower lawyer from Eric Siegel Law can offer counsel and support when you need it the most, and schedule a consultation as soon as possible.
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Exposing illegal acts that an employer is engaging in is a protected activity. It is an employee’s legal right to come forward and take action. However, in doing so, employees may become victims of retaliation. Retaliation is significantly impactful, and when this type of behavior is present, it’s essential to seek guidance from a lawyer. It’s recommended that employees speak with lawyers from the beginning to ensure that they receive the protection they deserve. Working with a lawyer can not only guide you during a tough and challenging time, but they can also assist in building a case against the party responsible for the retaliation.
Whistleblowing is an act that can be incredibly challenging to do, and while there are systems in place to protect employees who come forward, they are still at risk of facing consequences that they shouldn’t have to. While retaliation is not something any employer should engage in, it’s still a common occurrence. To learn more about our Washington DC whistleblower lawyer and the support, Eric Siegel Law offers, call our office as soon as possible.
If you are a whistleblower and are in need of legal help, don’t wait to contact a qualified lawyer. They can help you understand your legal rights and protect you against any retaliatory action. However, you need to take action quickly as there is limited time to work on your case. For more information about how you can benefit from hiring a whistleblower lawyer Washington, DC residents rely on upon, schedule a consultation right away.