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2012: What a Year to Blow Your Whistle

Despite reports of a federal government crackdown on leaks and whistleblowers, a review of the amount of whistleblower settlements in 2012 will blow your mind. Across all business disciplines and governmental agencies, whistleblowing led to major settlements.

Whistleblowing settlements across America

Spanning the spectrum of American businesses, whistleblowers were awarded significant sums of money in 2012. The United States Department of Justice recovered almost $5 billion in False Claims Act cases — most of which were filed under the False Claims Act’s whistleblowing Qui Tam provision, which provides tipsters with financial rewards.  Bradley Birkenfeld, former UBS banker, received $104 million for revealing the bank’s extensive scheme to enable U.S. citizens to hide their money and avoid taxes. In Knoxville, Tennessee, a truck driver, who was fired for complaining about his employer’s safety violations, won more than $30,000 after a three-year struggle.

Top Ten Whistleblower Settlements of 2012

Following is a list of the largest known whistleblower settlements in 2012:

  1. GlaxoSmithKine settled for $3 billion for illegal marketing of prescription drugs
  2. Abbott Laboratories reached a $1.5 billion because of off-label marketing of Depakote
  3. Bank of America settled for $1 billion when faced with charges of mortgage and bank fraud
  4. Merck reached a settlement of $950 million for marketing Vioxx illegally
  5. Pfizer avoided charges of kickbacks and using off label marketing for Rapamune by settling for $491million
  6. Senior Care Action Network reached a settlement of $323 million California Medicaid and HMO cost reporting fraud
  7. Actavis paid $202 million to settle a set of claims that the company inflated prices causing state governments to overpay on drugs
  8. Deutsche Bank settled for $202 million when facing changes of false certification for HUD/FHA loans
  9. Oracle paid $199 million to settle a charge of failing to provide discount pricing
  10. McKesson avoided charges that it deliberately drove up prices by settling for $190 million

Temper the celebration with the risks

Whistleblowers face a lengthy legal battle before trial or settlement.  They may also lose their livelihood, their friends and perhaps even their freedom.

For further information about Texas whistleblower suits, consult with a whistleblower attorney today.

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In his new book, "Standing Up to China: How a Whistleblower Risked Everything for His Country," former client & Author, Ashley Yablon, quotes Attorney Steve Kardell about Whistelblower Law.
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