The decision to become a whistleblower is one not to be taken lightly. Whether it’s under the SEC whistleblower program, the IRS Whistleblower Reward statute or under the qui tam provisions of federal or state false claims act, becoming a whistleblower can be a life-changing experience as well as substantially stressful. Standing up to powerful corporate interests can be very difficult in regard to stress and anxiety and also personally rewarding from an ethical, financial and moral standpoint.
Becoming a whistleblower can be one of the most rewarding aspects watching the government pursue recovery for fraud against taxpayers or investors (with the SEC). A whistleblower is a courageous individual that identifies a wrong and are able to take risks ensuring wrongs are righted.
Also important to know is that once the government completes its investigation, the case will eventually be unsealed and the whistleblower’s identity will become a matter of public record. This revelation could potentially have an adverse effect on various aspects of the whistleblower’s life including employment, social activities, and other aspects of their life.
Personal gratification is only one aspect of becoming a whistleblower. They can be entitled to a share of recoveries resulting from their lawsuits, which is in place to encourage whistleblowers to step forward as they take risks to report fraud. The amount varies a person can receive and is often from 15 to 30 percent. This percentage varies on if the government intervenes in the case and the extent to which the whistleblower substantially contributes to the prosecution.