FairLaw Firm: Your Miami Whistleblower Lawyer
Miami Whistleblower Attorney
A whistleblower objects to, refuses to participate in, or reveals information about illegal activity going on in an organization. They are usually employees of the organization. Their position as insiders gives them access to information unknown to the public or the authorities. Whistleblowers serve an important purpose as they can slow down or stop illegal activities, or they can help the government obtain the evidence to stop illegal acts and prosecute or sanction the parties involved.
Understandably people can be reluctant to go against or report their employer’s breaking the law out of fear that their livelihood may be affected. The good news is that federal and state laws protect whistleblowers from retaliation and give them availble avenues to take when they’ve been retaliated against. Florida’s Whistleblower Protection Acts and federal laws such as the False Claims Act make it illegal for an employer to suspend, demote, dismiss, or take any other unfavorable action against an employee for acting as a whistleblower. If that happens, the affected employee can take legal action against the employer and get compensated or reinstated, depending on the circumstances of the case.
Suppose you face retaliation at work because you acted as a whistleblower or are considering becoming a whistleblower in Miami. In that case, there’s no need to fear, as the law is on your side. However, you may need professional help from experienced Miami whistleblower attorneys to help you receive the maximum protection under the law as you pursue your claim.
How Employee Whistleblower Claims in Miami, FL Work
Whistleblower claims in Florida generally allege the following:
The Complainant Was Involved in a Protected Whistleblowing Activity
Under Florida’s whistleblower protection laws, whistleblowers are protected from retaliation if they engage in any protected activity. These activities include:
- Disclosing or threatening to disclose your employer’s illegal activities to the relevant authorities. If your claim falls under this head, you must show that you notified your employer or a supervisor of the illegal activity or policy and that they had enough time to make amends.
- Testifying against your employer before a government agency or at a hearing.
- Refusing to participate in your employer’s illegality.
The Employer Acted Against the Complainant Because of the Complainant’s Whistleblowing Activities
It is illegal for an employer to take any adverse/retaliatory action, such as a dismissal or demotion, against you for participating in the protected activities demonstrated above. If your employer has taken such steps, you can take legal action against them.
You’ll need to establish a link between your whistleblowing and the adverse action. For instance, showing that you were demoted after your employer became aware of you blowing the whistle on an illegal activity might be sufficient to establish that the adverse action was retaliatory. Oftentimes, there is no direct evidence of retaliation, but events that happen close to one another – such as within two or three months – are usually found to be related to a whistleblowing event.
The Whistleblowing Complaint Process
The procedure for employee whistleblower claims or complaints in Florida varies depending on whether a private or public entity employs the complainant and whether the illegal act offends any federal law, including those enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
If your employer is a state or federal government agency, your case will likely begin with an administrative investigation/inquiry by the state commission on human relations or any other designated state or federal agency. This complaint must be made within a relatively short period of time (as little as 60 days), and in writing, to the appropriate person or entity. The outcome of the administrative process would determine whether your case can be settled at that stage, you’ll need to go to court to seek relief, or pursue some other process.
If your case is against a private employer, you may be able to file a whistleblower lawsuit in court straightaway without any administrative intervention unless there is a specific procedure such as for a whistleblower who secretly reports unlawful tax activities, securities act violations, or overbilling of a government.
What Happens if Your Claim Is Successful?
If your whistleblower retaliation claim is successful, you may be reinstated to your previous position, compensated for lost wages, or awarded any other compensatory damages depending on the circumstances. You may also recover your attorney fees and other costs and benefits at the end of the process.
Successful whistleblowers who do not face retaliation are usually entitled to a percentage of the amount that the government recovers based on the information provided, which can be signifciant based on the amount involved.
How Experienced Miami Whistleblower Lawyers Can Help
Whistleblower Attorneys understand the applicable federal or state laws and can guide you through the whistleblowing process no matter your situation. Below are some of the specific ways they can help your case:
Legal Advice and Guidance Before You Blow the Whistle
Your report of misconduct or illegal activity has to be made timely and to the approrpriate person, entity, or agencyto qualify for whistleblower protection. For example, state employees must report misconduct by their employer(s) to the Office of the Chief Inspector General or the Inspector General for the agency where the illegal act occurred. If you instead report your findings to the wrong agency or an independent third party, such as a media outfit, you may become ineligible for whistleblower protection, and it is possible that you could be retaliated against with no protection or legal recourse available.
With their knowledge and experience, our whistleblower attorneys can help you identify where to make your report and guide you throughout the reporting process to maintain the protection offered by the whistleblower laws.
Whistleblower Case Evaluation
If you face retaliatory measures at work because of protected actions you took as a whistleblower, our attorneys can assess your case and help you understand your position under the relevant laws. This assessment would allow you to make informed decisions about your case.
Whistleblower complaints/claims involve a lot of legal procedures that could get confusing. Any mistakes in the process could prove detrimental or fatal to your case. With a skilled whistleblower attorney, you can be assured that your interests will be adequately protected. Your lawyer can represent you during the administrative review process or in court.
While considering your options, remember that whistleblower retaliation complaints in Miami, Florida, are tim-sensitive. For instance, if your whistleblower claim is against a state employer, you must file your complaint requesting an inquiry within 60 days from when the retaliatory act occurred. If you do not act within the required time, you may lose your right to challenge your employer’s adverse conduct against you. You also are required to file a lawsuit to address retaliation you suffered because of being a whistleblower, which means that delaying the filing of a case beyond the permitted time can mean you have lost the ability to make a claim. Do not delay any longer. Get in touch with an experienced Miami whistleblower attorney today.
Contact FairLaw Firm Today!
At FairLaw Firm, we are diligent about protecting employee rights and interests across the state. We believe no employee should be punished for telling the truth and upholding the law. So, if you’re considering stepping up as a whistleblower against your employer or your employer has taken a retaliatory action against you, our Miami, Florida, whistleblower attorneys are here to support you and work to ensure your success.
We cater to both private and public employees, including municipal workers. So if you work for a municipal authority and are concerned about improper practices at your workplace, our municipal liability lawyer can help you understand your options. We can also represent you as you pursue your unpaid wage claim or other monetary benefit claims to compensate for the harm or losses you may have suffered.
The welfare of Florida employees is our priority, and we provide a high standard of service if you let us represent you. Contact us today, and let us guide you as you take the first steps to secure your position and entitlements.