OIG investigations identify and develop facts related to allegations of wrongdoing on the part of FMC employees and individuals or entities having contracts with or receiving benefits from the agency.
Investigations of wrongdoing address violations of laws and regulations at any of these levels:
The subject of an OIG investigation can be:
- FMC employee
- FMC contractor
- a consultant
- a person or entity involved in alleged wrongdoing affecting FMC programs and operations
Employee Rights -- Protection from Reprisal or Retaliation
An FMC employee who is the subject of an OIG investigation has rights regarding representation and self incrimination. Per the Inspector General Act of 1978, as amended and the Whistleblower Protection Act, 5 U.S.C. § 2302(b)(8)), no one may retaliate, or seek revenge against an employee or engage in any act of reprisal based upon the employee complaining to or cooperating with the OIG. In addition, all OIG investigations are conducted in accordance with Quality Standards for Investigations, published by the Council of Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency.
Duty to Cooperate with the OIG Investigator
FMC employees have a duty to cooperate with the OIG and must respond to questions posed by an OIG investigator unless they have been advised that they are the subject of a criminal investigation. Intentional deception or concealment of a material fact in connection with an OIG investigation could be a violation of law and result in disciplinary action or criminal prosecution.
OIG Investigation Report
At the end of an OIG investigation, the OIG investigator prepares a report that sets forth the allegations and an unbiased description of the facts developed during the investigation. The investigative report does not include recommendations. OIG investigative reports are not public documents and are not available on the OIG’s webpage.
Criminal Activity or Fraud – Department of Justice
The OIG refers investigative reports that identify criminal activity or fraud to the Department of Justice for possible prosecution or recovery of monetary damages and penalties.
If administrative misconduct is found, the OIG forwards the report to the appropriate FMC management official for consideration of disciplinary action.
Prohibited Personnel Practices
The U.S. Office of Special Counsel has the authority to investigate and, where appropriate, prosecute claims of prohibited personnel practices. There are fourteen prohibited personnel practices, including reprisal for whistleblowing and personnel actions involving appointments, promotions, reassignments, disciplinary actions, and other personnel matters of a similar nature.