Becoming a Whistleblower

Usually, a whistleblower is someone with a strong moral sense who becomes outraged at wrongdoing at work and bravely chooses to speak up about it. Often, a whistleblower is someone who has expertise in their field. Of course, this field can be narrowly defined. It is important for a whistleblower to know exactly what they are talking about with respect to the misconduct they allege. In order to identify and speak out about what is wrong, a whistleblower must know how the job is supposed to be done correctly.

There are many potential difficulties and legal issues to consider both for the whistleblower and counsel when determining what kind of case the whistleblower may have. A skilled whistleblower attorney in the District of Columbia can help someone take all considerations necessary when going through the experience of becoming a whistleblower.

Motivations

A whistleblower will take action as the result of anger or outrage regarding misconduct at the workplace. Often, a whistleblower experiences a sense of betrayal when learning of their company’s actions. If an individual works for a company that is knowingly producing faulty devices that cause harm to others, the anger of having trusted the company, along with a desire to do something to rectify the situation, are strong motivations to bring a case forward.  Ultimately, however, the motivation of a whistleblower is secondary to the information that the whistleblower can provide.

Legal Rights of a Whistleblower

Before taking action, it is important that a potential whistleblower learns about their rights. Anyone in this position should seek counsel.  Whistleblower rights vary depending on the type of action taken and in some cases, depending on the industry in which the whistleblower works. How and where to report misconduct can become a crucial issue.

Who Can Become a Whistleblower

While there are certain prohibitions against becoming a whistleblower and collecting a monetary reward under specific circumstances, almost anyone can be a whistleblower. Many legal rights are also dependent on what the information is and what industry the whistleblower works.

Whistleblower reward law has constraints on who can collect a reward when reporting misconduct.  However, in this context, multiple individuals can act together as co-whistleblowers. So long as these individuals can work together without a conflict, cases with multiple whistleblowers can often be more successful, as multiple individuals are often associated with multiple sources of information.

Usually, a strong case, is relatively easy to understand. For a case filed under the False Claims Act, for example, the  false statement, misrepresentation, or misconduct should be easily identified. It may be the case that the industry, regulations, or law is complicated, but the wrongdoing usually is not. A whistleblower should know the industry and be able to identify the misconduct when becoming a whistleblower and work with their attorney to build the case.

Monetary Rewards

Many whistleblower laws include monetary rewards. They were enacted as an incentive for whistleblowers to come forward. The intent of Congress in creating the first whistleblower reward law was to incentivize reporting fraud. Such monetary rewards also enable whistleblowers to hire experienced legal counsel, which can be important to a successful case.

Still, most whistleblowers do not step forward with only monetary rewards in mind. Instead, many whistleblowers are y motivated by outrage regarding the misconduct which they experience at work and decide they must find a way to report it.

Learn More About Becoming a Whistleblower


The need for whistleblowers has only become more apparent with each passing year. The government simply does not have the capacity to investigate and detect wrongdoing without the inside information only whistleblowers can provide. Whether the issue is government contracting or healthcare or securities fraud, we are all dependent on somebody with the information as to how the illegal conduct is occurring coming forward to make a case. Without whistleblowers, most of the time no one would know where the wrongdoing is. To learn more about becoming a whistleblower, schedule a consultation with a compassionate and hardworking DC lawyer today.

Whistleblower Education Scholarship

Are you someone that stands up for what is right? Tony Munter Attorney at Law is pleased to announce the 2019 Whistleblower Education Scholarship! A $1000 award will be given to a student who best shares their story on how they took action against a wrongdoing. More details can be found at our scholarship page.