The False Claims Act allows whistleblowers—also called relators—to file qui tam lawsuits against individuals or entities that have defrauded the government. Qui tam lawsuits enable whistleblowers to earn rewards if the lawsuits they bring lead to recoveries by or on behalf of the government. Qui tam whistleblowers come from all walks of life, and although they are frequently current or former employees of the company committing the fraud, they don’t have to be. In many cases, qui tam whistleblowers can be independent contractors, competitors, customers, patients, and business partners.
The False Claims Act includes an ancient legal device called a qui tam provision (from the Latin phrase meaning "he who brings a case on behalf of our lord the King, as well as for himself"). This provision of the whistleblower act allows a private person who has information that shows the defendant has knowingly submitted or caused the submission of false or fraudulent claims to the government to bring a lawsuit on behalf of the government.
In general, the qui tam whistleblower under the False Claims Act is entitled to between 15 and 30 percent of the government's recovery. The whistleblower act gives certain protections for whistleblowers who report government fraud.