People in Connecticut who witness wrongdoings by their employer may suffer professional and personal repercussions if they become whistleblowers. Whistleblowers who want to keep their job should understand what is at risk and what type of legal protections they may have.
There are whistleblower laws on both the state and federal levels. One law, the False Claims Act, permits suits to be filed against entities or people who defraud the government and allows the plaintiff to receive a portion of any money that is recovered. This legislation also provides professional protections for people who engage in this type of whistleblowing.
whistleblower laws at the state level tend to vary from state to state, specifically regarding the definition of a whistleblower. There are also differences in the types of protections whistleblowers are granted as well as differences in the types of penalties that may be assessed if there is retaliation against whistleblowers.
In some states, whistleblower protection is given only to people who work in the public sector. On the federal level, the Whistleblower Protection Act provides protection only for federal employees who expose instances of abuse, waste and fraud that takes place in the federal government.
Some whistleblower laws require whistleblowers to file a complaint with a government agency in order to receive whistleblower protection. For example, the Water Pollution Control Act protects whistleblowers who file, institute or testify in legal proceedings about wrongdoings. There are state-level whistleblower laws that require whistleblowers first advise their supervisor of the wrongdoings in order to receive protection.
An attorney who practices whistleblower law may advise clients about what steps they should take to ensure that they have sufficient legal protection and are able to keep their job if they become whistleblowers. The attorney may assist with filing the necessary complaints with the appropriate government agency.