In recent years, there has been substantial national attention focused upon whistleblower retaliation cases. But what is whistleblower retaliation and to whom does it apply? Whistleblower retaliation generally describes a legal claim based upon the termination or demotion of an employee who has objected to or refused to participate in an employer’s unlawful conduct. There are many issues and nuances that have to be assessed to determine whether an employee has been subjected to whistleblower retaliation. First and foremost, it must be determined whether there is a law that actually protects the victim of the retaliation. Indeed, Pennsylvania law gives little protection to employees of private companies. By contrast, government employees are clearly protected by statute and civil service regulations. Likewise, New Jersey provides comprehensive protection to employees under the Conscientious Employee Protection Act. Other laws that may provide the basis for a cause of action include the Federal False Claims Act, Federal Civil Rights laws, such as 42 USC Section 1983, and common law theories for wrongful discharge in violation of public policy. It is important to have an experienced and qualified attorney assess your claim and assert the best legal causes of action on your behalf.
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