Whistleblowers reveal information that is illegal, a danger to others or an abuse of authority. They may also come forward if someone is breaking regulations, wasting funds or mismanaging. Delaware has laws to protect whistleblowers from retaliation and reward them for coming forward.
You could receive 15–25% of recovery in situations where the state intervenes. When the state doesn’t intervene, your reward could be 25–30% of the recovery. If you planned and initiated fraud, then the reward may be lower. Delaware could also reduce the compensation if the information you reveal is mostly publicly disclosed information.
In a successful case, Delaware allows you to receive two times your back pay if an employer retaliated against you. You could also receive interest on the back pay and compensation for damages that resulted from the employer’s retaliation. The law stipulates that whistleblowers can have their initial seniority status restored.
Before you expose someone, planning is important to make sure you stay within the law. Delaware has a statute of limitations of six years to expose someone. In some situations, the law may extend this to as much as 10 years.
You must also decide whether to come forth internally or externally. An internal whistleblower reports the inappropriate activity to someone within the organization or an organizational hotline. External whistleblowers go to the media, watchdog organizations, regulators or lawmakers. Weigh the pros and cons and potential backlash from each option before choosing your route.
There are ways to protect yourself when you become a whistleblower. You should research your options and put together the plan that is best for your situation.