Mechanic looking over automobile defect.

The Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act Allows Individuals to Report Automobile Defects

The Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act allows individuals to report automobile defects that should be known to the manufacturers or distributors.

In order to prevent motor vehicle deaths and injuries resulting from automobile manufacturing defects, Congress enacted the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act in 2015. Under the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act, individuals who report automobile safety violations, also known as whistleblowers, may be eligible for significant financial compensation. Below is an overview of the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act. For additional information on the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act, please contact a Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act Lawsuit attorney

Who Can Be a Whistleblower?

In order to be eligible for a whistleblower reward under the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act, an individual must

  • be an employer or contractor of a motor vehicle manufacturer, dealership, or part supplier;
  • who voluntarily provides original information to the Department of Transportation (i.e., information that isn’t already known to the Department of Transportation);
  • regarding noncompliance with safety requirements or a motor vehicle defect;
  • that is likely to cause a risk of death or severe injury; and 
  • leads to financial sanctions of over $1,000,000.

How Can a Whistleblower Claim a Reward?

An individual who meets the above qualifications and whose information leads to a successful resolution of the reported issue can receive up to 30 percent of the monetary sanctions collected in a Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act case. The amount that a whistleblower receives is determined by the Secretary of the Department of Transportation, which is why it is important to obtain the services of a Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act attorney before becoming a whistleblower. 

Are Whistleblowers Protected? 

Whistleblowers receive protection under the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act.

Whistleblowers remain anonymous unless 

  • a whistleblower agrees to be publicly identified;
  • a whistleblower’s identity must be disclosed in connection with a public hearing;
  • the Department of Transportation obtains information about a safety issue through an alternative source and has the legal authority to release a whistleblower’s identity; or
  • information regarding a safety violation (including a whistleblower’s identity) may need to be given to the defendant. However, in this type of situation, the Department of Transportation must redact personal details to protect the identity of the whistleblower. In addition, even if the employer learns of the whistleblower’s identity, retaliation is prohibited by law.

Contact a Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act Lawsuit Attorney 

Whistleblowers who report information pursuant to the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act deserve to be rewarded for their bravery. However, the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act is a complicated statute. Therefore, if you have information you’d like to report for financial compensation, you need an experienced Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act attorney on your side. At Jeffrey Newman law, attorney Jeffrey Newman will take steps to protect your anonymity, protect you from employer retaliation, and negotiate on your behalf to obtain the largest reward possible. Please contact us today to schedule a consultation.