Many employees who report wrongdoing or misconduct within an organization don’t realize it, but there are a few things to consider before becoming a whistleblower.
The decision to become a whistleblower never comes easy, as statistics show that employees are likely to get fired for whistleblowing. Thankfully, federal and state laws in California protect employees from retaliation and wrongful termination after exposing misconduct or wrongdoing within a company. So what are the things you need to consider before blowing the whistle?
You may be fired
Statistics show that over 70% of all whistleblowers get terminated. It’s also likely to get suspended or demoted. Harassment and poor evaluations can also take place in retaliation for reporting misconduct. Only an experienced wrongful termination attorney can help you collect sufficient evidence of wrongful termination in your particular case.
Here at Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers, we have navigated hundreds of whistleblower-related cases and many of our clients pursued wrongful termination claims after being fired for whistleblowing.
You need to comply with the laws
In order to report wrongdoing or illegal activities within a company, there are certain procedures you must follow in order to comply with the laws. Federal and state laws in California are pretty strict when it comes to whistleblowing, which is why it’s recommended to seek legal help from a wrongful termination attorney before reporting any wrongdoing. Failure to comply with the laws may result in a loss of whistleblower protection.
Meaning: you will not be protected by whistleblower law even if you get fired after reporting misconduct in the workplace to authorities. You may also lose your protection from other forms of retaliation for exposing mismanagement and illegality to higher authorities. Many whistleblowers tend to lose protections for failing to exhaust all internal means before reporting their claims externally (to the government or authorities).
Meaning: many laws require employees to report misconduct or illegal activities to the company’s leadership first before exposing the matters to external authorities. In such a way, the employer gets an opportunity to correct the alleged wrongdoing in the workplace. If he/she doesn’t, the whistleblower may report the matter to external authorities. On the flip side, it’s not surprising that employees go straight to external authorities out of fear of retaliation or wrongful termination. In fact, it’s also possible that the company’s leadership could cover up evidence of the wrongdoing before external authorities start their investigation of the matter. Also, reporting wrongdoing internally may create a hostile environment for the whistleblower, making his/her job unbearable. Every particular case must be assessed by a wrongful termination attorney to determine all the risks and solutions.
Call Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers at 310-527-6994 today for a free initial consultation. We guarantee complete confidentiality and the best representation of your interests in and out of court. Our wrongful termination attorney will help you report any wrongdoing, mismanagement, misconduct or illegality in the workplace properly.
Under the new California whistleblower law, employees are entitled to compensation for any damages sustained by wrongful termination, including lost income.