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Michigan Whistleblower Laws

A "whistleblower" is an employee who reports illegal or unethical acts of his or her employer to the proper authorities. Because employers may face sanctions, monetary penalties, or expensive remediation costs (the costs involved in fixing or “remedying” the violation), reporting employees may find themselves victims of employer retaliation -- to either punish the employee, deter future reporting, or both. Retaliation can take the form of firing, suspension, demotion, denial of pay or benefits, and even threats/intimidation.

Because it is in the best interests of society that violations be reported and fixed, the government wants to encourage reporting by offering employees some level of protection. Therefore, whistleblower laws protect public and/or private employees from being retaliated against for reporting these violations.

Michigan whistleblower laws protect both public and private employees, and allow plaintiffs to be reinstated to their job position and to collect attorney fees if they prevail in their case.

The following chart details Michigan whistleblower laws. See Whistleblower Protections to learn more.

Code Section

15§361, et seq.

Prohibited Employer Activity

Can not discharge, threaten, or otherwise discriminate if employee or representative of employee reports or is about to report violation of law, regulation, or rule or because employee testifies in hearing or a court action unless employee knows disclosure is false

Protection for Public or Private Employees?

Both

Opportunity for Employer to Correct?

-

Remedies

Can file civil action within 90 days if violation for injunction and/or actual damages, including attorney's fees. Court may award: reinstatement, back pay, reinstate benefits and seniority rights, and court costs

Penalties

Civil fine, maximum $500

Note: State laws are constantly changing -- contact a Michigan whistleblower attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

More Information

For more general information on this topic, check out FindLaw’s informational section on whistleblowers. For more information on Michigan’s whistleblower laws, take a look at the links listed below. Or if you’d like to compare Michigan’s whistleblower laws to other states’ laws, you may find FindLaw’s Details on State Whistleblower Laws to be a helpful resource. Finally, if you have been retaliated against by an employer, or you plan on reporting a violation, you may want to consult with an employment lawyer to ensure your rights are protected.

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