Federal agencies are strictly prohibited from taking retaliatory measures against employees who disclose information about negative agency action. This prohibition stems from a variety of legislation, including the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Action. So if you feel your federal employer has taken negative action against you in response to the information you shared, contact a whistleblower litigation & OSC lawyer from the Bell Law Group, PLLC We have more than 100 years of combined legal experience fighting on behalf of mistreated employees.
The Office of Special Counsel & Whistleblower Actions | Our OSC Litigation Lawyers Can Help
In general, most whistleblower actions are first heard by the Office of Special Counsel (OSC). The OSC is an independent government agency that specifically handles the investigation of whistleblower complaints. In general, the OSC’s process is as follows:
- Once the OSC receives notice of an alleged instance of retaliation, it will assign an examiner to investigate the claim.
- The investigator will review all records and supplemental materials associated with the claim. The goal of this review is to determine if, at this stage, there is enough evidence to show that retaliation occurred.
- Based on the examiner’s initial review, one of two results will occur: the examiner will recommend that the OSC pursue further investigation, or the examiner will close the case and send a letter to the employee stating that he or she can now pursue an individual right of action (IRA) with the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB).
- Consequences of the OSC’s more detailed investigation include mediation between the employee and agency and prosecution against the agency for its actions.
If the OSC finds that the government agency in question violated the employee’s whistleblower rights, the OSC may order corrective action to benefit the employee or disciplinary action to punish the individuals who allowed the retaliation to happen.
Why You Need an Attorney at This Stage
The complaint you file with the OSC is the only chance you have to tell the OSC what happened and why you deserve corrective action. This complaint, called Form 11, is 14 pages long. It lays out what information you must provide and also allows you to attach supplemental materials that you feel may assist in the initial review of your claim.
An experienced whistleblower litigation & OSC lawyer, such as attorney Jon Bell, can help you properly fill out this form. Additionally, your lawyer can identify the right materials to send along with your application to give you the best chance at success. Finally, if the OSC concludes it will not take your case – which occurs in a majority of claims – your lawyer will be there to help walk you through the next steps of pursuing your IRA with the MSPB.
Contact a Whistleblower Litigation & OSC Lawyer
You only have a small window of time available to file your initial whistleblower retaliation complaint with the OSC. Do not waste any time in seeking the help of a knowledgeable attorney who can help you with your claim. Contact the lawyers at our federal employment law firm today at 855-566-2355. We will meet with you in a free strategy session, either over the phone or in person, to discuss whether you have a claim worth pursuing and, if so, what next steps you will need to take to protect your rights.