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Articles

What Makes Whistleblowers Tick?

June 11, 2013

Articles

What Makes Whistleblowers Tick?

June 11, 2013

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They may be working down the hall from you right now, gathering internal documents and copying hard drive information that later may be used as evidence to topple your company or force your shareholders to bear the brunt of an expensive legal fight.

For corporate officers and in-house legal departments, they represent one of the most dangerous groups in the today’s workforce. Some call them heroes. Others call them martyrs. Some think they’re simply tattletales. Our legal system calls them whistle-blowers, and they’re not going away anytime soon.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a whistle-blower as “one who reveals something covert or who informs against another.” The work backgrounds for whistle-blowers run the gamut, from hourly employees to corporate officers and directors, all of whom have made the decision to divulge a company’s internal workings in an attempt to prove wrongdoing or fraud.

Whistle-blower lawsuits, also known as “qui tam” lawsuits, have been on the rise since the worldwide economic downturn that began in 2008. Much of this increase can be attributed to new state and federal laws, including the federal Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. These new rules have provided an unprecedented bevy of whistle-blower protections, in addition to significant financial rewards for those whose allegations lead to settlements or courtroom verdicts where companies find themselves on the losing end.

Read the full article, “What Makes Whistleblowers Tick? ” that Natalie Arbaugh wrote for Corporate Compliance Insights to learn more about whistleblower rewards, drawbacks, and how to protect your company.

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