When an employee has a sense of loyalty to the company with which he or she works, it can be difficult to admit that there may be some wrongdoing or inaccurate information being circulated. Should an employee, including those in Wisconsin, feel that there is information that needs to be corrected, they could be deemed a whistleblower and face retaliation from employers or co-workers. Company reputations can be damaged if it is found out that false claims were made, and they may wish to take measures to ensure that negative publicity does not circulate.
A report issued by an advocacy group showed that about 124,000 working age men and women with disabilities in Wisconsin were employed in 2011. The report also showed that 210,000 men and women with disabilities were also jobless during that same time. That works out to six out of 10 working age individuals with a long-term disability having been unemployed in America's Dairyland State in 2011.
When dealing with the government, companies need to be careful of overselling their products and services. Many times companies in Wisconsin and elsewhere may end up crossing the line of legality by misrepresenting their services or product in order to obtain larger profits. One company was accused of doing just this when a whistleblower turned the company in to the authorities for violations of the False Claims Act.
When federal laws are enacted, they apply to all 50 states. For example, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act provides rules and requirements for qualified retirement plans provided by employers from 401(k)s to long-term disability insurance. Although this law applies to all 50 states equally, does it affect residents in Wisconsin the same way it does in Minnesota? The answer is, not always.
For most people in Wisconsin, thinking about an injury putting a career to end is not a pleasant prospect. Unfortunately, though, sometimes injuries or illnesses do prevent an individual from being able to continue plying their normal trade or career. When this happens, Social Security disability can be a well-deserved and necessary safety net that helps them make ends meet from month to month. For this reason, it is worth learning about just how this benefit works.
Social Security Disability is an invaluable resource provided by the U.S. Government to those who are unable to work due to disability. Social Security Disability claims vary from psychological disabilities to physical disabilities. Depending on one's disability and income history prior to the disability, disability benefits awarded to Wisconsin residents can vary dramatically. For this reason, many individuals seek the support of a professional for assistance when filing a Social Security Disability claim.
Residents of Wisconsin may be interested to learn that a company recently agreed to pay over $14 million to the United States in order to settle a Medicare fraud lawsuit. Purportedly, the former regional vice president of Sound Physicians acted as a whistleblower and reported his company's misconduct. The company has allegedly cheated the government out of millions of dollars.
A former project manager at Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC) has come forward as a whistleblower. As some in Wisconsin may already know, under the False Claims Act, whistleblowers are given a portion of any funds recovered as a result of a successful investigation. In this man's case, he received somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.88 million.
A recently released report by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Wisconsin Agri-Business Association (WABA) suggests that grain handling is an area in which safety improvements can be made. Workers within the grain industry are exposed to a wide range of risks associated with grain handling, and the partnership between OSHA and WABA was created in 2012 to address safety issues pertaining to grain workers. Representatives from the two organizations meet quarterly to discuss worker education programs and other ways to reduce the occurrence of injuries that could lead to long-term disability and even death.
It's a rough road for employees with disabilities, and sometimes it's even tougher if the employer merely 'perceives' that there's a disability. Wisconsin and all other states are bound by the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This case is about a deputy Sheriff in another state who had a stroke. He came back to work several months later on a part-time basis and then moved to full-time.