Miami attorney John H. (Jack) Hickey understands that when an employee believes his or her employer is committing fraud against the government, it can seem like an impossible task for the employee to handle on his or her own. Hickey Law Firm, P.A. upholds the rights of employees in whistleblower cases.
A whistleblower is someone who works for a company that is defrauding the government and informs the proper authorities of such fraud.
Oftentimes, whistleblowers will face unlawful discrimination and workplace retaliation from their employers for such actions. However, they can receive compensation from the government for their help in the case. Our attorneys can also help you get payment for any lost wages that occurred during the whistleblower case. For a free consultation, please call Hickey Law Firm, P.A. at 305-371-8000 today.
How to Win a Whistleblower Case
Similar to all legal issues, the success of a whistleblowing case is dependent on several factors including the amount of evidence presented and the way the legal argument is framed. While there is never a guarantee of success in these cases, working with an experienced and proven whistleblower attorney may be very useful in securing a positive outcome.
What Happens in a Whistleblower Case?
Whistleblower cases can take several years to settle. Your attorney will need to gather evidence during an investigative period which may take months, but the government’s investigation can take up to ten years depending on the complexities of the case.
Many of these cases settle out of court through an agreement with the whistleblower, the government, and the guilty party. Those that require a trial may take much longer to settle. When you choose Hickey Law Firm for your whistleblower claim, we will keep you informed of progress each step of the way to make sure you are always aware of what is happening with your case.
How Much Is a Whistleblower Case Worth?
Each case is different. The best way to determine what your case may be worth is through a free case review at our Miami office.
Our Experience with Whistleblower Cases
Our firm has experience helping individuals pursue whistleblower cases against their employers. This work includes representing Dulce M. Ramirez-Damon in a lawsuit against ATI Career Training Center, a private and for-profit career college with multiple campuses in Florida and Texas, which gained national attention.
As a former Assistant Director of Education at the Fort Lauderdale campus of ATI, Ramirez-Damon witnessed how ATI augmented and counterfeited records of ineligible students to make them eligible for federal aid programs. But many students never saw the benefits of these grants. ATI received this money directly from the government, even for students who did not return to campus after the first week of classes. These unlawful practices also led to many ATI students accruing massive amounts of debt without the assistance of their promised federal student aid.
The Miami Herald quoted our Miami injury lawyer John H. (Jack) Hickey in an article on this case: “It was a real bad deal for everybody, except for the people at the top making money. It was a bad deal for the students because they didn’t get a useful education. It was a bad deal for the U.S. government and the American taxpayers, who really got ripped off.”
Why File a Whistleblower Case
When a company commits fraud against the government, whether it is in the form of false, exaggerated, or counterfeit paperwork or other false practices, this is something a whistleblower may want to report. A whistleblower must be an employee or previous employee of this fraudulent company and have specific evidence of the crime.
Whistleblower cases are filed under the False Claims Act (FCA) which provides that the person that draws the government's attention to the crime may receive between 15% and 25% of the recovery. It also helps protect the whistleblower from the loss of their job and can get them lost earnings if they were fired during the process.
What Kind of Evidence Is Needed?
Documentary evidence is essential for winning a whistleblower case. This can include emails, memos, meeting notes, financial records, recorded conversations, and anything else that shows evidence of illegal or illicit activities. Any information you can provide to your attorney will be useful in establishing your case.
Average Whistleblower Settlements
On average, whistleblowers are awarded around $865,000 per case. This is, of course, dependent on numerous factors with some whistleblowers seeing smaller awards and others much larger due to the nature of their cases.
The government may compensate whistleblowers with up to 30% of the money collected in these cases. The larger and more financially significant a case, the larger and more financially significant the reward may be.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for a Whistleblower Case?
Under most circumstances, you have six years to report wrongdoing through a whistleblower complaint in the state of Florida. This may be extended to ten years in some cases.
It is never a good idea to wait to take action, however.
It can be frightening to report wrongdoing, especially when doing so could impact your livelihood. But remember, whistleblowers are protected against retaliation and are often generously compensated. If you are aware of criminal or questionable activities, talk to one of our lawyers to learn about your options. Your confidential consultation is free of both cost and obligation, and can give you a clear idea of how to move forward with your claim.
Contact Us for Help with Your Whistleblower Case
Our law firm works on a contingency fee basis. If there is no recovery, our client does not owe us anything. We only receive payment if there is a recovery. This means that there are no financial risks if you would like to learn about your legal options to file a whistleblower lawsuit.