The U.S. Federal whistleblower statute enables individuals known as whistleblowers to unveil fraud within the government. Enacted in the 1860’s and significantly modified in the mid-1980’s, this statute has thus far led to the recovery of more than $30 billion for the U.S. Government in the last three decades alone by giving incentives and protection to those with information and willingness to blow the whistle on the unlawful activity.
Similar to the U.S. Federal whistleblower statute, individual states have also enacted their own whistleblower statutes to cut back on state fraud. Nearly half of all states to date have enacted some form of a whistleblower program, and Pennsylvania is quite possibly next. Recently, lawmakers have introduced whistleblower legislation in the state. If passed, this would allow whistleblowers to file a civil suit against anyone alleged to have committed fraud against the state. Of course, one of the many incentives to this statute and the federal statute alike would include a considerable reward for the whistleblowers themselves.
If this legislation is approved, Pennsylvania can look forward to a new source of revenue as well as a new means of punishment for those who cheat the state’s taxpayers through fraudulent activities.
Whistleblower statutes are designed to prevent and rectify fraud related activities on both the federal and state levels, and the Pennsylvania state government aims to be the next state to join the ranks and increase its level of protection for its state taxpayers.
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