How to Do What’s Right and Stay Protected When There’s Fraud in Your Workplace
01/21/2013 // San Francisco, CA, USA // Whistleblower Law Firm // Jeffrey Keller – Whistleblower lawyer // (press release)
We all know the clichés. Punching the clock. Working for the man. Bringing home the bacon. It’s the day to day routine of going to work to get paid so you can go home and live your life. But what happens when things that are couched as “just part of the job” are actually asking an employee to participate in fraudulent or unethical activity?
Some examples might include:
• Padding time cards to reflect a higher number of hours spent on a project than what was actually worked
• Charging for a more expensive or higher quality item but providing something less than that to the customer;
• Billing for something that wasn’t even done or provided
• Signing off as being in compliance with federal, state and local laws when the workplace is actually not compliant.
These seemingly obvious wrongs nonetheless still occur in all kinds of businesses, from banks to pharmaceutical companies to companies building airplanes and satellites.
“Let’s be clear. Being asked to participate in fraudulent or unethical conduct should not be a part of anyone’s job description,” says Jeffrey F. Keller, a founding partner at Keller Grover, a nationally recognized labor and employment law firm, and a veteran whistleblower lawyer. “We hear stories describing employees being made complicit in everything from little cheats to full blown conspiracies to take millions of dollars from customers, including the government. It’s important for an employee who finds herself in a workplace where this is happening to know that she’s not the first or only person to face tough decision-making about what to do.”
“Fraud is a snake with two heads that can bite,” says Keller. “It can hurt the person being lied to – typically a customer. But it can also hurt the employee who is being put in the impossible situation of either going along with something they see as wrong or having to take a stand against the person or people responsible for handing out the employee’s paychecks.” A variety of whistleblower laws acknowledge these two separate issues and provide powerful tools every employee should make themselves aware of. Under the False Claims Act, the employee who blows the whistle on fraud on the government can benefit from important protections against potential retaliation by employers — anything from demotion and harassment to outright dismissal. The Act also provides powerful incentives to encourage employees or anyone aware of fraud on the government to report it to the authorities. For example, a person with knowledge of fraud on the government may be able to bring a lawsuit on behalf of the government — and receive a share of any resulting recovery. A qualified whistleblower lawyer can help explain these laws and every employee’s rights along with the steps to take in deciding how to confront fraud or misconduct in the workplace. The whistleblower law firm of Keller Grover can provide individuals with a free consultation about their potential case. Contact the firm today.
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