Did you see something at work that made you feel uncomfortable? Was or is your employer engaged in illegal practices? If so, then you’ve probably been left in a difficult position. On the one hand, you rightly feel like you should report the issue. On the other hand, and you may have experienced this already, employers oftentimes punish employees for reporting these illegal practices. This retaliation isn’t always blatant, and it’s oftentimes aimed at getting you to quit, which is why if you’re in this position now, then you may want to consider taking legal action to protect yourself.
Lansing whistleblower reinstated
One whistleblower in Michigan did just that. There, the employee consistently complained about the employer’s accounting practices, which appear to have been fraudulent in nature. The employee was subsequently placed on a work improvement plan and ultimately fired.
The U.S. Department of Labor, though, found that the employee’s reporting was protected under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and therefore the employee’s firing was illegal retaliation. As a result, the Department of Labor has ordered the employer, a chemical company, to reinstate the employee to the position that he or she had prior to being terminated, as well as pay that individual more than $750,000 in damages.
Don’t be afraid to do the right thing
We know that standing up to an employer under any circumstances can be frightening, but it can be especially nerve wracking when doing so means pointing out illegal behavior. But don’t let your fear paralyze you into inaction. Instead, consider what you can do to protect yourself while still doing the right thing. That may mean speaking with an attorney who can help you devise a strategy to protect your identity, call out your employer, and secure the compensation you deserve.