By Brian Mahany
There are no signs that the Occupy Wall Street movement is slowing. Cold temperatures might be keep some people indoors but their message grows louder by the day. People are pissed off, although most of the movement’s members don’t have a plan as to how to fix the underlying problems that plague or financial and political system. Listen to some of the video feed from Occupy Wall Street protesters on YouTube and its obvious to see that there is no consensus. From socialists to anarchists, ideas are plenty yet few are practical.
Recent weeks have seen violence, several deaths and vandalism. The original Occupy Wall Street protesters captured America’s attention. Now the fringes of that group, the homeless and professional agitators are beginning to capture our attention. If there was a message, it is getting lost.
What should the organization do? Here is one idea. Use class action lawsuits and state and federal false claims acts to bring down corruption and greed on Wall Street. Many of our political and financial institutions have lost touch with reality. They are bloated, greedy and incestuous. They are also ready to fall and it won’t take too much of a push.
Protesting is useful but knocking down corrupt regimes with the government’s own tools is more effective.
If you know of corruption within a public enterprise, the SEC’s whistleblower program may provide you a significant reward. If a company is ripping off taxpayers, the false claims act is a powerful tool that allows whistleblowers to become miniature, private “attorneys general” and bring suit on behalf of the government.
Want an example? The medical clinic that bills for services not performed allows the owners to profit while driving up health care costs and hurting taxpayers. Bring suit on behalf of the government and collect an award while insuring the monies stolen from the program are paid back.
Here is another example. In April, our firm sued Allied Home Mortgage Corporation, one of the largest FHA authorized mortgage lenders in the nation. Allied also has one of the highest default rates meaning taxpayers often pick up the tab, desperate homeowners struggle to stay in homes they never could afford and the company’s owners stash millions in personal bank accounts.
Taxpayer rippoffs and fraud are everywhere. Stand up, become a whistleblower and help fix the problem. In doing so, you are not only helping fix the system but potentially earning a nice cash award as well.
That’s right – cash award. Use the tools Congress gave us back in the 1800’s in ways no one ever thought of. Use these tools to get back some of the massive profits earned by dishonest and corrupt businesses and their owners.
Think of it as financial reform that earns you a paycheck.
Our fraud attorneys are always looking for current or former employees, contractors, vendors or insiders with information about fraud. Whether you are looking for to get your own Wall Street bailout, angry about greed and corruption or just “want to make things right,” we are eager to speak with you.
All inquiries are strictly confidential. In most instances, employers can’t retaliate against employees and others who come forward with information about fraud.
Mahany & Ertl – America’s Fraud Lawyers. Offices in Milwaukee, Detroit & Portland. Services available in most jurisdictions.