What laws protect whistleblowers?
Whistleblowers are protected under the False Claims Act by the confidentiality rules, which ensure that when a person first steps forward with their lawyer to the government to expose the fraud by someone else, the initial investigation is done under seal and confidentially. Which means that the person or company who’s perpetrating the fraud doesn’t find out about the whistleblower’s identity until and unless a court orders the case to be unsealed.
Second, whistleblowers are always protected by the attorney client privilege. Anything they share with their lawyer is protected by confidentiality until and unless the whistleblower gives the lawyer permission to go forward with the information.
And then finally, because many whistleblowers are insiders, they work for a corporation or for a person who is perpetrating a fraud on the government. There are special employment laws and regulation that protect lawful whistleblowers against defamatory action or retaliatory action.