Whistleblowers have a lot to face when they come forward to report wrongdoing or illegal action on the part of an employer. This takes a lot of courage and many protections are in place to help whistleblowers when they have something to report.
If you or someone you know is considering coming forward about illicit activities being conducted by a colleague or employer, here are five tips you should know:
In order to do this effectively you must consider many factors related to the reporting process itself. You must always think about your liability in any violations that took place, as well as being absolutely sure that such violations did indeed occur. You need not always worry about a regulatory body pursuing any legal action against you, even if your participation in the violation is considerable. Should you decide to ultimately come forward about a violation or a series of them, you may want to talk to whistleblower attorney.
2. To Whom You Should Report
You may have options in this regard, typically depending on the facts related to the wrongdoing. What type of protections or encouragement (if any) do your company or organization offer to anyone eager to come forward about information? Should you report to a boss or supervisor or is it better to go to an authority or enforcement body to discuss the violation?
3. Under The Radar
That’s where you want to remain for as long as possible, whether you plan on maintaining your anonymity or not. Going around acting obvious as to your intentions to come forward such as asking a lot of leading questions, taking photographs, and even leaving behind a browsing history on your office computer or smartphone device regarding whistleblower tips and actions (hopefully you’re not reading this from either one of those) can make it a lot more difficult for yourself in the long run.
4. Plenty Of Evidence
You’ll need it before you come forward, regardless of whether you plan to come forward in-house or to an outside body. All of your documentation must be detailed and precise, follow a dependable timeline of events, and above all, remain legal in every aspect. When you are gathering your evidence, be sure you know the laws in your state as to what is legal and what is not. You need as much corroborating information as possible, don’t sacrifice important evidence because it was obtained illegally.
5. Don’t Go It Alone
Assuming the role of a whistleblower comes with a myriad of concerns and potential dangers to your career. This is not a process you want to take on all by yourself. You should hire a good whistleblower lawyer to help you every step of the way. From deciding where, how, and to whom you should report your findings to filing the claim, the law can be a very complicated road to traverse alone. You want someone on your side who knows whistleblower laws and has the expertise to guide you through this difficult journey.