Whether you are a federal contractor, a government employee, or an individual associated with some level of federal involvement, you may be shocked to learn that you are under investigation by the federal government.
When the feds decided to target you for investigation, they are common signs to watch out for ( see below). The most common signs of being under investigation include talking to your friends and even leaving a business card on your door. Oftentimes, if the FBI brings you under its investigation ‘claws,’ it may not confirm that you are a target. If at any time you have a hunch that you are under investigation, you want to serious reach out to a criminal defense attorney.
Why? Because once you waive any legal rights, you cannot get them back.
Unfortunately, the government does its homework before a federal government investigation is launched. Signs of being under investigation may be obvious and others may not be so obvious. Regardless of which type of sign, you should always remember that you do have constitutional rights.
OBVIOUS SIGNS OF BEING UNDER INVESTIGATION
If you are wondering how to find out signs you are under investigation, there are a series of obvious signs such as:
- A government investigator knocks on your door and attempts to ask questions – having legal counsel present is always a preferred option that you should seriously think about.
- Sometimes during a government investigation, and to preserve the element of surprise, investigator or other law enforcement personnel may execute a search warrant. You can ask to see when presented.
- The most common sign of being under investigation is when the federal government issues you a subpoena. This is especially true for government contractor under investigation for fraud against the government.
- Sometimes federal prosecutors may send out a target letter asking for your cooperation and to come in and answer questions. This is another situation where having a government investigation attorney is critical
NOT SO OBVIOUS SIGNS OF BEING UNDER FEDERAL INVESTIGATION
In addition to the above, there are also not so obvious signs of being under investigation by the federal government. The following are common indicators or red flags that you may be under investigation
- As a government contractor, the contracting officer or even the contracting officer representative starts asking your employees about operational facts in the company
- The contracting officer in writing has sent you actual letters about mistakes in your invoices
- You were issued a cure notice or show cause notice about faulty equipment or improper materials
- The government out of the blue ask for a site visit to your business
- A co-work or friend starts asking you unusual questions about your job and how you do it
- You receive an audit that concludes that the government has overpaid you.
WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU THINK THAT YOU ARE UNDER FEDERAL INVESTIGATION
- If you think that you are under federal investigation, there are some basic suggestions to keep in mind.
- Seek the help of an experienced attorney for how to find out if you are being investigated
- Understand that you have a right to be questioned with your lawyer present.
IS THERE A WARRANT OUT FOR YOUR ARREST?
It’s possible. Look for signs such as a law enforcement officer leaving a business card on your door with a request to contact them. This could be an indication that they want to serve you with a warrant.
DO YOU HAVE TO SPEAK TO LAW ENFORCEMENT IF THEY APPROACH YOU?
Federal investigators are trained to make you feel tremendous pressure to speak to them. However, you want to plan on speaking to them but not without legal counsel present. This is a crucial aspect of a government investigation when your legal rights, constitutional rights, and others, could be in serious jeopardy.
When you think that you are under investigation by the federal government, be careful with who you talk to. Speaking to third parties can be problematic in that those people can be called to testify or issued a subpoena. Whatever you do, always remember that the investigation office keeps tabs on what you do.
If you’ve found out that you are under a federal investigation, call us to get a free initial consultation at 1-866-601-5518.