Whistleblower Protection Blog

Whistleblower Protection Blog

Advocating Whistleblower Rights for over Twenty Years

Inspector General Failed to Protect VA Whistleblowers

Posted in Government Whistleblowers, News
Whistleblowers: VA's Watchdog Office Is Failing Us

Yesterday, U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) held a hearing with Veterans Affairs whistleblowers, the current Acting Inspector General and Special Counsel for the U.S. Office of Special Counsel to investigate claims of veteran abuse and continued agency misconduct and whistleblower retaliation at Veterans Affairs hospitals across the country. Dr. Katherine Mitchell and Dr. Lisa Nee testified about the malpractice and fraud they encountered working at VA hospitals during the hearing, which was held on National Whistleblower Appreciation Day.

“Frankly, the malignant culture is so pervasive at the Phoenix VA in all levels of administration that there are only two reasons why an IG team would fail to substantiate bullying behavior,” said Katherine Mitchell, the doctor who blew the Continue Reading

Senate Recognizes Whistleblower Appreciation Day

Posted in News
National Whistleblower Day

Washington, D.C. Washington, D.C. July 30, 2015. Today, by a unanimous resolution the U.S. Senate declared July 30th as “National Whistleblower Appreciation Day.” The resolution comes on the anniversary of the first ever whistleblower protection law, enacted by the Continental Congress 237 years ago, at the height of the American Revolution. Continue Reading

May 2015 SEC Whistleblower Awards List

Posted in Claim SEC Award
SEC third largest whistleblower award

The SEC Office of the Whistleblower post Notices of Covered Action where a final judgment or order, by itself or together with other prior judgments or orders in the same action issued after July 21, 2010, results in monetary sanctions exceeding $1 million.Subject to the Final Rules, individuals who voluntarily provided the Commission with original information after July 21, 2010 that led to the successful enforcement of a covered action listed below are eligible to apply for a whistleblower award.Once a Notice of Covered Action is posted, individuals have 90 calendar days to apply for an award.

View the updated list below:   Continue Reading

Senators Set to Speak at First Congressional Celebration for Whistleblowers

Posted in Events, News
United-States-Capitol

Washington, D.C. July 28, 2015. On July 30th, seven senators will come together for the first time to publicly celebrate our nation’s whistleblowers. The celebration, hosted by the National Whistleblower Center, is being held on “National Whistleblower Day” in commemoration of the Founding Fathers’ passing the first ever whistleblower law in 1778, as well as the crucial role whistleblowers play in defending our nation from waste, fraud and abuse. The two Keynote Speakers for the event are Senators Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Ron Wyden of Oregon, who serve as the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Senate Whistleblower Protection Caucus. Joining them to speak are Senators Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Mark Kirk of Illinois, and Tom Carper of Delaware (TO BE CONFIRMED), also members of the Whistleblower Protection Caucus.

The passage of the first whistleblower law was traced back to a resolution signed unanimously by the Continental Congress in 1778. In this resolution, our Founding Fathers declared: Continue Reading

The FCA Does Not Permit Recovery for Violations of “Any Fine-Print Regulatory Requirement”

Posted in False Claims / Qui Tam
stopfraud

The Chamber of Commerce has commenced a well-financed and aggressive lobbying campaign to undermine America’s most effective whistleblower law, the False Claims Act. To justify its anti-whistleblower campaign the Chamber published a report entitled, “Fixing the False Claims Act: the Case For Compliance-Focused Reforms.”

The purpose of this blog series is to combat the Chamber’s misinformation, and explain why the False Claims Act must be protected. Whistleblowers and their supporters are strongly urged to read this blog series and share it with friends.

Fact Number 24:

The Chamber’s claim that “any fine-print regulatory requirement” can result in FCA liability is patently false and misrepresents the FCA.    In the very first case cited to by the Chamber to justify its argument, the court was very careful to “caution” that liability under an implied certification theory cannot be interpreted “expansively and out of context.”  The court explained that the FCA “was not designed for use as a blunt instrument to enforce regulatory compliance,” and that law should not be interpreted in an “expansive fashion” that would “improperly broaden the Act’s reach.”    Continue Reading

Grassroots Coalition Pushes to Establish July 30th as National Whistleblower Day

Posted in Legislation, News

National Whistleblower Day July 30th
Washington, D.C.  July 27, 2015. Today, over fifty grassroots advocacy groups and individual whistleblowers joined together to support the creation of a National Whistleblower Day. In a letter to President Obama and Congressional leaders, they stated the importance of the establishment of July 30th as a day to recognize the critical role whistleblowers play in maintaining the integrity of our nation.

The letter related the history of the first whistleblower law, which our Founding Fathers unanimously passed on July 30, 1778, recognizing the right of all citizens to report “misconduct, frauds and misdemeanors” to the “appropriate authority.” Continue Reading

Recent Settlements under the False Claims Act

Posted in False Claims / Qui Tam, News
medicare-fraud2

The below cases were settled by the Department of Justice in April 2015:

Texas-Based Citizens Medical Center Agrees to Pay United States $21.75 Million to Settle Alleged False Claims Act Violations

Citizens Medical Center, a county-owned hospital in Victoria, Texas, agreed to pay the United States $21,750,000 to settle allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by engaging in improper financial relationships with referring physicians, the Justice Department. Continue Reading

House Passes Bill to Expand Protections for Federal Employees Against Discrimination

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
House Passes Bill to Expand Protections for Federal Employees Against Discrimination

Yesterday, the House of Representatives passed, by a vote of 403-0, a bipartisan bill introduced by Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, to strengthen equal employment protections for federal workers. Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, as well as Reps. Eleanor Holmes Norton, James F. Sensenbrenner, and Sheila Jackson Lee cosponsored the bill, the Federal Employee Antidiscrimination Act of 2015, H.R. 1557. Continue Reading

The Chamber’s Proposal to Limit Recoveries to “ Net Actual Damages ” is Not Needed

Posted in False Claims / Qui Tam
The FCA’s Penalties Are Not Excessive

The Chamber of Commerce has commenced a well-financed and aggressive lobbying campaign to undermine America’s most effective whistleblower law, the False Claims Act. To justify its anti-whistleblower campaign the Chamber published a report entitled, “Fixing the False Claims Act: the Case For Compliance-Focused Reforms.” The purpose of this blog series is to combat the Chamber’s misinformation, and explain why the False Claims Act must be protected. Whistleblowers and their supporters are strongly urged to read this blog series and share it with friends.

Fact Number 23:

The Chamber of Commerce alleges that under the FCA, “courts have increasingly been willing to award the United States all amounts paid on a claim, without considering the actual out-of-pocket loss to the government and ignoring the benefits of goods and services that were received by the government.”

Continue Reading