What does QUI TAM mean in Latin?
“The term “qui tam” is derived from the Latin expression “who sues on behalf of the king as well as for himself.”
What is a qui tam action?
A qui tam action exposes fraud upon the government. It is brought by an informer or whistle blower. This whistle blower can be referred to as the “plaintiff,” or the “relator.” A whistle blower is often an employee of a corrupt organization, motivated by a desire to correct injustice and expose misconduct.
What’s in it for the whistle blower?
First, the whistle blower can derive moral satisfaction; he or she provides information to recover the funds wrongly paid by the government to the wrongdoer. In this sense, the whistle blower’s actions are heroic because he or she brings to light a wrong or series of wrongs perpetrated upon the government. Often fraud upon the government is only part an overall pattern of misconduct- corrupt organizations that defraud the government often also defraud consumers, create dangerous products, and abuse their employees. Secondly, the whistle blower can receive money.
How much money does the whistle
The reward ranges from 10% to 25% of the amount recovered from the wrongdoer, plus attorney’s fees, expenses, and costs. The amount of the bounty depends upon certain factors such as (a) whether the whistle blower was active or passive in the action; (b) whether the information provided was already publicly known. G.L. c. 12 § 5F.
Qui Tam Statutes
What is the burden of proof in a qui tam action?
The burden of proof in a qui tam action is the civil “preponderance of the evidence” standard.
Are whistle blowers protected by from employer retaliation?
Yes. A whistle blower is protected by Massachusetts statute from retaliation by her employer. G.L.A. c. 12 § 5J.
- Statutory qui tam actions as a response to the Supreme Court’s ruling in Concepcion (pubcit.typepad.com)
- Qui tam suits in action (lawprofessors.typepad.com)
- Democracy depends on whistle-blowers (timesunion.com)