The False Claims Act is a law that allows a private citizen with knowledge of fraud against the government to bring what is known as a qui tam action against the person or company engaged in the fraud. What this means is that the lawsuit is brought by the private citizen, but on behalf of the government. And if the lawsuit is successful or results in a settlement, then the private citizen who brought the lawsuit receives a portion of the amount recovered, typically between 15 and 30 percent. The False Claims Act also has provisions making it unlawful for an employer to retaliate against an employee for blowing the whistle on the employer’s fraud against the government, and an employee who is fired or otherwise retaliated against may be able to sue for that unlawful retaliation.
The False Claims Act has a number of technical procedures that must be followed to preserve the right of the whistleblower to receive a portion of the recovery. Accordingly, if you are a private citizen with knowledge of fraud against the government, you should seek advice from an attorney knowledgeable about the False Claims Act.
For more on these issues, please visit our firm’s other website, FraudFighters.net.