People who work for the government or large corporations are entitled to act as a whistleblower if any labor laws are ever violated. The laws are in place to protect the public as well as the individuals who work for these entities. Unfortunately, not everyone adheres to them, which can create an uncomfortable situation. Whistleblowers frequently find themselves retaliated against, but there are laws in place to protect them as well. It’s important to know how to report an employer to the Department of Labor.
Reporting an Employer
A whistleblower is a person who reports illegal or unethical practices within a company or the government. In some cases, they may have also been asked to participate in the activity but refused to do so. There are a number of situations that can result in someone reporting their company. Dangerous working conditions, discrimination, and being denied benefits to which you are entitled are a few examples.
Reporting violations of labor laws is not cut and dry. Different violations must be reported to different agencies within the Department of Labor. For example, if you are being denied benefits for which you are entitled, you would have to report it to the Wage and Hour Division. Meanwhile, if dangerous working conditions is the issue, it must be reported to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Checklist for Filing a Complaint
Generally speaking, the process for filing a complaint depends on the specific law and the agency to which you must report it. However, as a whistleblower, this can serve as your checklist:
• Is the situation one that can be resolved internally? If your employer isn’t aware of it, they can’t take steps to rectify the problem. • Document the situation, such as any complaints made and the reactions and responses of managers and coworkers to those complaints. • Contact the right agency or division to find out if you should file with a state agency prior to reporting to the Department of Labor. • File your complaint within a timely manner. Waiting too long can result in a dismissal by the Department of Labor.
How to Keep Your Job
Many employers will dismiss a person who has been found to have violated labor laws. Unfortunately, though, others may not appreciate these individuals being exposed. As a result, a whistleblower may face backlash in the form of retaliation that may include a pay cut, negative performance review, harassment or even being let go from their job.
At the same time, there are laws against this type of retaliation. It’s possible to file a claim for retaliation with OSHA. Again, there are time limits for filing. Call us to learn more.
If you are in California and faced retaliation for whistleblowing, you need the assistance of a skilled whistleblower attorney. A Los Angeles whistleblower lawyer can help you with your claim. Contact the top whistleblower attorney Los Angeles has to offer and discuss your situation with employee discrimination lawyers immediately.