R. Scott Oswald
(888) 603-0983 (Toll Free)
With more than three dozen trials to verdict and over $90 million recovered in judgments and settlements in employment and whistleblower actions, Scott Oswald is an accomplished trial lawyer in whistleblower retaliation, qui tam, wrongful discharge, discrimination, FMLA, USERRA, non-compete, and wage and overtime actions in federal and state courts, including a $57 million False Claims Act settlement, a $466,816 Equal Pay Act verdict, a $1,000,000 sexual harassment jury verdict, a $282,000 District of Columbia Whistleblower Protection Act jury verdict, a $579,338 Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) jury verdict, a $101,000 Title VII/Equal Pay Act jury verdict, a $1,134, 886.86 Wage Payment Act judgment, a $650,000 retaliation jury verdict, an $819,000 False Claims Act Whistleblower Retaliation jury verdict, and numerous settlements exceeding $1,000,000.
Mr. Oswald is an innovator in using whistleblower anti-retaliation laws to obtain money damages for whistleblowers. Notably, Mr. Oswald was Sheila Kalkunte's lead trial counsel in her ground-breaking Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) whistleblower retaliation claim, which was the first successful SOX retaliation trial verdict liability finding to withstand appeal. Mr. Oswald was Dr. Weihua Huang’s trial counsel in the first reported successful jury verdict interpreting the whistleblower anti-retaliation provisions of the False Claims Act under the 2009 Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act. Mr Oswald was counsel in the first federal court Dodd Frank Act retaliation suit to withstand a motion to dismiss on the merits and proceed to discovery.
Mr. Oswald uses the protections afforded whistleblowers to prevent employers from wrongfully terminating whistleblowers’ employment. For example, Mr. Oswald was Dr. Ning Shen’s counsel in her successful action to prevent the United States Department Veterans Affirms from terminating her employment while she litigated her employment claims.
Mr. Oswald is one of the few attorneys to prosecute a Maryland wrongful discharge claim to a winning jury verdict and to prosecute a Maryland retaliation claim to a winning punitive damages jury verdict. His successes have been featured in numerous publications including The Washington Post, The National Law Journal, The Federal Times, BNA’s Daily Labor Report, LawyersUSA, Employment Law360, Virginia Lawyers Weekly, Workforce Management Magazine, Washington Lawyer Magazine, Medical Practice Compliance Alert, Crain’s Detroit Business, Human Resource Executive and LegalBiz Now.
Mr. Oswald’s cases have helped establish the vanguard of employment and whistleblower law for federal employee whistleblowers - Drake v. USAID, Miller v. TSA; SOX whistleblowers - Kalkunte v. DVI, Leznik v. Nektar, Stone v. IL; Feldman v. LEA; Qui Tam whistleblowers - Glynn v. IST, Mann v. H&K; Nuclear whistleblowers – Smith v. Duke Energy; those who have suffered workplace discrimination because of their age - Inman v. Klockner-Pentaplast; gender -Murtagh-Cooke v. U.S., Kennedy v. Virginia Tech; disability - Fink v. Richmond; race and national origin - Kumar v. Hilton Hotels Corp.; sexual orientation - Altan v. IK Retail Group; protected activity – Weintraub v. MHASM; and those who have been wrongfully discharged - Miller v. Washington Workplace, McFarland v. VRSCC, Randolph v. ADT. Mr. Oswald’s cases have helped define the contours of laws that protect employees who have had their wages or benefits unlawfully withheld - Risteen v. YFU, Sharer v. Tandberg. Mr. Oswald also has been at the forefront of the fight against forced arbitration of employment claims: Shaffer v. ACS, Booker v. Robert Half International.
Mr. Oswald is recognized as one of the Best Lawyers in America in the category of Employment Litigation. He is recognized as one of the “Top Ten Employment Lawyers” in the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area by Top Ten Leaders. He is an American Lawyer Magazine “Top Rated Lawyer.” Mr. Oswald has been awarded a Martindale Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review rating and is rated 10 out of 10 by Avvo.
Mr. Oswald is the Immediate Past-President of the Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association. He served as the 2011 Employee-Representative Chair of the D.C. Superior Court Whistleblower Protection Act Jury Instruction Committee and as a member of the 2010 District of Columbia Judicial and Bar Conference Planning Committee. Mr. Oswald is a member of the National Employment Lawyers Association’s Executive Compensation, Trial Advocacy, and Whistleblower Committees.
Mr. Oswald, who holds a Top Secret security clearance, lectures extensively on employment and whistleblower law, especially on the trial of employment claims in state and federal courts under the False Claims Act, the Dodd-Frank Act, the Sarbanes Oxley Act, FMLA, Title VII, ADEA and wrongful discharge and termination in violation of state public policy. He is the faculty chair of The D.C. Bar’s “Changing Currents in Employment Law” CLE and a regular panelist on the D.C. Bar’s “Fundamentals of Employment Law” series and is asked to speak regularly on ways to maximize damages recoveries in the trial of employment claims. To that end, in 2010 The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission invited Mr. Oswald to testify on the remedies that the EEOC should seek in its federal court enforcement of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), and in 2011 the Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration invited Mr. Oswald to guide it in restructuring its Whistleblower Protection Program.
Mr. Oswald has authored numerous articles on federal and state whistleblower and employment law protections. He authors a chapter on Exceptions to The Doctrine of Employment At Will for the D.C. Practice Manual and is the editor of the Whistleblower Law Blog. Mr. Oswald has authored numerous amicus curiae briefs on discrimination and whistleblower protection issues including VanBuren v. Grugg (which argued for – and the Virginia Supreme Court adopted - individual manager liability under the tort of wrongful discharge in violation of Virginia public policy); Jordan v. IBM (which argued for a broad application of the anti-retaliation provisions of Title VII), Johnson v. Siemens (which argued - and the court later held - that subsidiaries of publicly traded companies are covered entities under, and therefore subject to, the Sarbanes Oxley Act’s anti-retaliation provisions), Bonds v. Leavitt (which argued for – and the court later followed – an expansive interpretation of the term “disclosures” in the Whistleblower Protection Act to guarantee maximum protection for government whistleblowers), Villanueva v. Core Laboratories NV (which argued for an extraterritorial application of SOX, when the protected activity includes emails to the U.S. and the decision to fire the whistleblower is made in the U.S.) and is active in efforts at the national and state level to strengthen legal protections for whistleblowers and employees.
Mr. Oswald is a graduate of the University of Virginia and received his law degree from Howard University School of Law. He is admitted to practice before the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia and Florida bars, the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the 3rd, 4th, 5th, 9th, 11th, D.C., and Fed Circuits, the United States District Courts for the District of Columbia, District of Maryland, Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia, Northern and Southern Districts of Florida, Northern District of Illinois, Northern District of Indiana, and Western District of Tennessee.
Co-Author: “Is Bullying in the Workplace Illegal?” Los Angeles Daily Journal & San Francisco Daily Journal (February 15, 2013)
Author: “Accomodations for Returning Veterans Suffering from PTSD: A Guide for Employers.” Westlaw Employment Journal (January 23, 2013)
Author: “ADEA Claims in the Wake of Gross v. FBL Financial Services, Inc.” Corporate Counsel (January 9, 2013)
Author: “2012 Opens The Door For More Whistleblower Participation.” Law 360 (January 3, 2013)
Author: “Rewarding Whistleblowers for Disclosing Tax Violations to the IRS.” The CPA Journal (December 2012)
Author: “Whistleblower Attorneys: Recent SEC Settlement with Pipeline Inc. May Encourage Dark Pool Trading Suit.” Oregon Law Journal and Traders Magazine (December 20, 2012)
Author: “Finding Ways to Protect IRS Whistleblowers.” Law360 (November 29, 2012)
Co-Author: “Smooth Transitions for Servicemembers: USERRA Protections.” Law360 (November 21, 2012)
Author: “Plaintiff’s Counsel Answers FAQ’s on Election Talk in the Workplace.” Employment Law Daily (October 24, 2012)
Author: “Political Discrimination in the Workplace.” Oregon Legal Journal (October 18, 2012)
Author: “A Primer on Employment Discrimination.” Washington Blade (September 5, 2012)
Author: “Understanding the Ethics of Whistleblowing is Key to Effective Internal Reporting.” Labor Law Reports/Insight (July 25, 2012)
Co-Author: “Health Care Law Expands False Claims Act Liability Under Anti-Kickback Statute,” Health Care Fraud Journal (May 2012).
Author: “The Eighth Circuit Differentiates Between Political Discrimination and Retaliation,” Bloomberg BNA’s Daily Labor Report® (May 18, 2012)
Author: “More Protection for Whistleblowers, Department of Labor, Administrative Review Board 2011 Year in Review,” Sarbanes-Oxley Compliance Journal (April 25, 2012).
Author: “New Laws Expand Workers’ Rights.” The Washington Post, (April 8, 2012)
Author: “The Supreme Court Finds Religion, A Look at Hosanna-Tabor.” The Employment Law Strategist (March 2012).
Co-Author: “Recent Developments in Qui Tam Litigation” The Rocket Docket News.” The Newsletter of the Northern Virginia Chapter of the Federal Bar Association (Winter 2012).
Author: "Common Mistakes That Encourage Employees to Seek Legal Advice.” The Corporate Counselor (November 2011).
Author: "Introduction to the Federal Security Clearance Process.” Westlaw Journal on Government Contract (October 2011).
Co-Author: “Blowing the Whistle.” The California Lawyer (October 2011).
Co-Author: “Drafting and Negotiating Executive Compensation Agreements.” BNA Pension and Benefits Daily (September 2011).
Co-Author: “D.C.’s Amended Whistleblower Protection Act: The Gold Standard for Public Sector Whistleblower Protection.” BNA Daily Labor Report (September 2011).
Co-Author: “The SEC’s New Rules for the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program.” Westlaw Journal on Employment (September 2011).
Co-Author: "Whistleblowers: What Protections And Forms of Relief Are Available For Foreign-Based Employees," ABA Section Of International Law Spring 2011 Meeting (March 2011).
Author: “Use of Early Focus Groups In Employment Cases,” The Employee Advocate (Winter 2011).
Author: "Court of Appeals Clarifies the Scope of Protected Conduct Under Maryland Health Care Worker Whistleblower Protection Act, Provides Insight into Maryland Public Policy," Maryland State Bar Association Fall Newsletter (December 2010).
Co-Author: "Whistleblower Protection In New Food Safety Bill," Law360 (December 2010).
Co-Author: "Litigating Claims Under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act," The Employee Advocate (Fall 2010).
Co-Author, “New Tools to Combat Whistleblower Retaliation,” Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund Quarterly Review, Vol. 57 (October 2010).
Co-Author: "Whistleblower Provisions Of The Dodd-Frank Act," Law360 (July 20, 2010).
Co-Author: “Whistleblower Protections in the Finance Reform Bill,” Law360 (May 27, 2010).
Co-Author: “Whistleblower Protections Under Health Care Bill,” Law360 (April 12, 2010).
Co-Author, “Congress Enacts Robust Whistleblower Protections To Prevent Fraud In Stimulus Spending,” The Employee Advocate (May 2010).
Co-Author: “Federal Whistleblower Protections for Transportation Employees,” The Employee Advocate (Spring/Summer 2009).
Co-Author: "SOX: A Robust Remedy For Whistleblowers," Law360 (August 2009).
Co-Author: “Representing Whistleblowers in Adler Wrongful Discharge Actions,” Maryland Bar Journal (July 2009).
Co-Author: "Questions and Answers About the Qui Tam Provision of the False Claims Act,” The Practical Lawyer (June 2009).
Co-Author: “Strategies for Defending Against Non-Compete Litigation,” Virginia State Bar’s Litigation News (June 2009).
Co-Author: “DOL ARB Decision Reinvigorates Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Protection,” 7 Workplace L. Rep. (BNA) No. 475 (April 3, 2009).
Co-author, “Blowing the Whistle on Tax Fraud Reaps Rewards,” SmartPros Ethics & Compliance Insights (March 2009).
Co-Author: "Stimulus Fund Safeguards for Whistleblowers," Law360 (February 2009).
Author: Update to "Employment At Will and Exceptions to Doctrine," a chapter in the D.C. Practice Manual (D.C. Bar Publications), 2008.
Co-author: "New Protections for Consumer Safety Whistle-blowers," American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law Newsletter Vol. 37, No. 1 (Fall 2008).
Co-Author: "Win for Whistleblowers," National Law Journal (September 8, 2008).
Author: "Sarbanes-Oxley Act Whistleblower Retaliation Provision," Avvo (September 2008).
Co-Author: "The Umpires Strike Back", Legal Times (June 2008).
Co-Author, "Protecting the Whistleblower," Corporate Responsibility Officer (February 2008).
Faculty Chair: “Changing Currents in Employment Law.” D.C. Bar CLE, October 15, 2013.
Panelist: “Employment Law Basics.” D.C. Bar CLE, June 11, 2013.
Moderator: “The Contractor Whistleblower Provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 – A Boon for Contractor Whistleblowers?” The Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association, Washington, D.C., May 15, 2013.
Panelist: “Current Developments and Procedures at the SEC, CFTC, and IRS Whistleblower Offices.” 2013 OffshoreAlert Conference, Miami, Florida May 6, 2013.
Panelist: “Blowing the Whistle in 2013: Hot Topics in Qui Tam Litigation.” Federal Bar Association CLE, Maryland Chapter, May 3, 2013.
Speaker: “Investigator Training Program.” Boards of Directors of the International Association of Official Human Rights Agencies (IAOHRA) and the National Association of Human Rights Workers (NAHRW), March 8, 2013.
Moderator: “Effective Trial Presentations.” Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association’s (MWELA) 2013 Annual Conference, February 8, 2013.
Panelist: “Whistleblower Protections for Human Resources Professionals.” Professionals in Human Resources Association (PIHRA), Los Angeles, California, January 22, 2013.
Panelist: “The Dynamics of Employment Litigation in Federal Court: A View from the Bench and the Bar.” Bar Association of Montgomery County, Maryland CLE, January 10, 2013.
Panelist: “Maximizing Damages At Trial: Practice Pointers From Successful Trial Attorneys.” Maryland Employment Lawyers Association (MELA) Eight Annual Conference, Columbia, Maryland, December 7, 2012.
Panelist: “Blowing the Whistle in 2012: Hot Topics in Qui Tam Litigation,” Federal Bar Association, District of Columbia Chapter, Federal District Courthouse Washington, D.C., November 14, 2012.
Faculty Chair: “Changing Current in Employment Law.” D.C. Bar CLE, October 16, 2012.
Panelist: “Age Discrimination in Employment,” International Association of Official Human Rights Agencies Annual Conference, New Orleans, LA, August 8, 2012.
Panelist: “Drafting and Negotiating Executive Employment Agreements.” D.C. Bar CLE, June 12, 2012.
Panelist: “Recent Developments in Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Whistleblower Rules: Opportunities and Risks.” D.C. Bar CLE, March 18, 2012.
Panelist: “Blowing the Whistle in 2012: New Developments in Qui Tam Litigation,” Federal Bar Association, Northern Virginia Chapter, Alexandria, VA, March 7, 2012.
Faculty Chair: “Changing Currents in Employment Law,” D.C. Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., October 25, 2011.
Presenter: “Qui Tam Cases - How To Handle Them,” The American Association for Justice, National Webinar, New York, N.Y., July 13, 2011.
Panelist: “Representing Whistleblowers Under The False Claim Act,” National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Convention, New Orleans, LA, July 2, 2011.
Panelist: “Gaps in Age Discrimination Protections under Federal and Virginia Employment Law,” Alexandria Human Rights Commission, Alexandria, VA., June 21, 2011.
Moderator and Panelist: “Drafting and Negotiating Executive Employment Agreements,” D.C. Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., June 20, 2011.
Panelist: “Overview of the Purpose and Intent of FLSA and OSHA”, American University Washington College of Law, Washington, D.C., April 18, 2011.
Panelist: “The Opening Statement at Trial, Setting the Stage,” 2011 National Employment Lawyers Association, Trial Advocacy Seminar, Los Angeles, California, March 25, 2011.
Panelist: "Impact Of Economy On Older Workers," U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Full Commission Meeting, Washington, D.C., November 17, 2010.
Panelist: Changing Currents in Employment Law, “Damages in Employment Law Actions,” D.C. Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., October 26, 2010.
Panelist: "Discovery Strategies and Challenges in Leave & Disability Cases," National Employment Lawyers Association Fall Convention, Oakland, California, October 15, 2010.
Panelist: Use of Early Focus Groups In Employment Cases, 2010 National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Convention, Washington, D.C. June 24, 2010.
Panelist: “Fundamentals of Employment Law Series,” DC Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., June 14 20, 2010.
Panelist: “Pregnancy and Parenthood: Advising Employers and Employees on Their Rights and Responsibilities,” DC Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., May 19, 2010.
Panelist: “Qui Tam Cases,” Maryland Association for Justice, Columbia, Maryland, April 22, 2010.
Panelist: “Recent Amendments to Federal Whistleblower Statutes, Maryland Tort of Wrongful Discharge, and Cross-Cutting Issues in Most Whistleblower Protection Cases,” Montgomery County Bar, Rockville, Maryland, April 14, 2010.
Moderator: “Effective Use of Structured Settlements in Executive Compensation, Whistleblower Claims, and Other Employment Disputes,” Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association, Washington, D.C., January 28, 2010.
Panelist: “Fundamentals of Employment Law Series,” DC Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., October 20, 2009.
Panelist: “Changing Currents in Employment Law: Recent Developments Update,” DC Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., June 18, 2009.
Panelist: “The Use of Technology at Trial – Using Technology to Demonstrate Expertise, Better Service Clients, and Attract New Business,” District of Columbia Bar CLE, May 21, 2009.
Moderator and Panelist: “Litigating Under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act,” DC Bar CLE, April 16, 2009.
Moderator and Panelist: “Demonstrating Hidden Bias or Stereotyping to Win our Cases,” 2009 Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association Annual Convention, Washington, D.C., March 13, 2009.
Panelist: “Litigating Successfully under the Equal Pay Act: Lessons Learned from Murtagh-Cooke v. NTSB,” Metropolitan Employment Lawyers Association CLE, Washington, D.C., January 30, 2009.
Panelist: “Negotiating Separation Agreements: What Employers Need to Know, What Employees Should Insist Upon, and Where the Interests of Both Parties Converge,” DC Bar, Washington, D.C. January 29, 2009.
Panelist: "Representing the Maryland Whistleblower under Adler," Maryland Whistleblower Laws, Montgomery County Bar Association CLE, Rockville, MD, November 13, 2008.
Panelist: "Knowing Your Legal Rights," Annual National Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Ally College Student Conference, Out for Work, Washington, D.C., September 27, 2008.
Moderator and Panelist: “Punitive Damages – How to Get Them and Keep Them,” 2008 Metropolitan Employment Lawyers Association Annual Convention, Washington, D.C., April 11, 2008.
Panelist: “The Nuts and Bolts of Litigating Disability Discrimination Cases,” D.C. Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., May 1, 2007.
Panelist: "Understanding the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act," D.C. Bar CLE, Washington, D.C., May 4, 2005.