Sometimes companies get things wrong. They take shortcuts that flout safety regulations. They allow discriminatory practices at work that make life unpleasant for certain employees. Or maybe they play fast and loose with certain overtime and wage laws. If your employer does something wrong, you should report it. A Los Angeles whistleblower lawyer from our firm can help.
Who Can Be Considered a Whistleblower?
A whistleblower is a person who sees unsafe conditions at work or notices that their employer is breaking some kind of law. They report that issue to the relevant state or federal authority, and sometimes agencies like OSHA or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission will investigate and find a problem.
Being found violating the law or safety rules can cost a company a lot of money. It may not be good for a firm’s reputation either. In some cases, that means that the higher-ups might get quite angry with whoever caused regulators to investigate them in the first place.
What is Retaliation and Why Do Whistleblowers Have to Worry About It?
This is why some people worry about coming forward and becoming whistleblowers themselves. If your boss is mad at you, that can make life at work a lot less bearable. A company is not supposed to punish a whistleblower, but sometimes it tries to anyway. This is called retaliation. An employer may try to retaliate against a whistleblower by:
- Demoting them
- Reducing their pay
- Changing their job or assignment
- Firing them
- Blacklisting them and affecting their reputation in their industry
Understandably, the potential of facing these kinds of consequences can deter some people from coming forward when they believe that there is a problem with how their employer is operating. This is why the government tries to protect whistleblowers from retaliation.
How Does the Government Protect a Whistleblower From Backlash?
This is why the government has protections for whistleblowers. A company that retaliates against an employee who made a complaint or one who participated in an investigation can quickly find themselves in some hot water. Sometimes an employee can sue them and receive damages like lost wages. There can also be steep civil penalties for violating these protections.
When Do I Need an Employment Lawyer?
An employment lawyer can help you in a few ways. One can help you file your initial complaint with the relevant state or federal agency. These agencies see a lot of complaints, so you want to make yours as convincing as possible. An attorney cannot promise anything, but you can be sure that we will do our best to help you successfully petition a regulator to investigate your company.
We can also help you if you are a victim of retaliation after you file a complaint. If we can show that you were unfairly targeted despite whistleblower protections, we can help you sue for damages and hold your employer accountable.
Talk to Our Legal Team Today
If you want to learn more about what an attorney can do for you, contact RD Law Group. Whether you suspect unsafe practices at your company or you have seen discriminatory behavior in action, schedule a consultation with our team. We can help you protect yourself and fight for what’s right.