Uhlig v. Fluor Corp., No. 14-2815 (7th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Uhlig brought False Claims Act and retaliation claims against his former employer, Flour, which had contracted with the U.S. Army to provide electrical engineering work in Afghanistan. Uhlig says Fluor knowingly breached the terms of its Army contract by using unlicensed electricians as journeymen and billing the government for the services. Uhlig also contends Fluor wrongfully terminated Uhlig as a whistleblower in violation of 31 U.S.C. 3730(h). The district court granted summary judgment for Fluor. The Seventh Circuit affirmed. A plain reading of the contract documents is that Fluor needed to ensure that its electricians were qualified for the duties to which they were assigned by virtue of license, certification, training, or education. Nothing in the contract suggests that Fluor was required to elect one method of verifying its electricians’ qualification and that Fluor would then be limited to that method. Uhlig’s retaliation claim failed because he did not show that, at the time of the incidents at issue, a reasonable employee in Uhlig’s position would have believed Fluor was defrauding the government.