Whistleblower Retaliation Claims Lawyer
When you see something at work that is unethical or illegal, you may have hesitation in reporting it. Although your first instinct is to correct the wrong, you know that some employers punish people who blow the whistle on workplace schemes. Especially those in the federal government may be concerned that they will ruin their careers if they choose to report illegal actions. However, the attorneys, like a whistleblower retaliation claims lawyer in Washington, DC from Eric Siegel Law, know that you have worked hard in your federal career and that you do not want blowing the whistle to impact whether you stay at your job, if your boss promotes you, or if your employer punishes you in any other way. In fact, there are many laws in place that protect federal employees who blow the whistle. For more information on how you are protected as a federal employee, or to set up your first consultation with one of our attorneys, please call our office today.
What Exactly Is Whistleblowing?
When a person “blows the whistle”, they are essentially reporting their employer to the proper authorities if they find that their employer is conducting illegal activity of any kind. Common actions that a whistleblower reports are:
- Wasting or illegally using company funds
- Posing a danger to public safety, and
- Abusing authority
What Should You Do Before Blowing the Whistle?
While not all reports are founded, you want to ensure that you have a strong reason to believe that what you wish to disclose is accurate. A complaint founded on substantial evidence and fact-checking is reasonable when blowing the whistle. A complaint based on gossip from around the office is not.
Does the Law Protect Federal Employees?
Yes. It is illegal for your employer or manager to threaten you in any way because of whistleblowing. In fact, Congress was so concerned about retaliation against whistleblowers and protecting them from an abuse of power, that they created the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989. This specifically states that employers must not retaliate against whistleblowers.
Who Do I Report My Complaint To When Whistleblowing?
If you decide to blow the whistle, federal employees typically have three ways to do so. These are:
- Contacting the Office of Special Counsel
- Contacting the Inspector General, or
- Reporting the Act to a Supervisor
Whistleblowing to the Office of Special Counsel is formal but provides you with confidentiality when you file a report. Additionally, reporting your complaint to the Inspector General’s office in the agency you believe the wrongdoing is taking place is a good method for whistleblowing, but there is no guarantee they will investigate your claim. Finally, the most informal way of whistleblowing is by telling a supervisor. If someone punishes you for blowing the whistle in any of the above circumstances, you should speak with a federal employee attorney regarding your rights as a whistleblower and how the law protects you.
Who Can I Reach Out To?
When you become a whistleblower and believe that your employer is retaliating against you in some form, you want to have an attorney on your side who you can trust and who knows your rights. This is why you should work with a law firm. They know what your rights are and will protect them to ensure your federal career can stay on track. Reach out to a lawyer today.