Nashville whistleblower awarded treble damages

by Kurt Schulzke

Wondering how seemingly small falsehoods can produce large whistleblower awards?  In a recent Tennessee case, a general contractor was tagged for treble damages totaling $1,661,423 after his subcontractor completed 98 percent of the electrical work on a military base construction project.

Turns out the subcontractor failed to pay his electricians Davis-Bacon Act “prevailing wages” as expressly required by the contract.  The contractor, in turn, falsely certified that the subcontractor had complied with the Davis-Bacon Act.  Citing the contract’s clear Davis-Bacon Act requirement and the contractor’s two decades government contracting experience, the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee on March 15, 2010 awarded the government treble damages under USC 3729(a)(7). The case is U.S. ex rel. Wall v. Circle Construction, LLC, DC MD Tenn, No. 3:07-0091.

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