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SEC Whistleblower Lawyer Blog

Articles Tagged with SEC Whistleblower Program

CFTC-to-Issue-Whistleblower-Award-of-Approximately-290000-1024x711-300x208The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced on September 24, 2018 that it has awarded nearly $4 million to an overseas whistleblower.

The overseas whistleblower provided a tip that led the SEC to open an investigation. Further, the overseas whistleblower’s assistance helped the SEC bring a successful enforcement action.

This is one of the few instances in which the SEC issued a whistleblower award to an overseas whistleblower. The award indicates that any individual, overseas or in the United States of America, that voluntarily provides the SEC with original, relevant information is eligible to participate in the whistleblower process, be afforded the protections of the process, and obtain a whistleblower award.

The Whistleblower business can be very profitable for tipsters, a landmark whistleblower award of nearly $2.5 million was awarded today by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The recipient of this award was the employee of a domestic government agency. Information provided by this whistleblower was instrumental in launching a SEC investigation. The anonymous whistleblower continued to offer assistance and eventually helped expose wide ranging misconduct in an unnamed company.

Jane Norberg, the Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower praised whistleblowers and the continued success of the award program.

”Whistleblowers can provide a wealth of information and ongoing assistance that helps our agency bring enforcement actions quicker and more efficiently,” She also noted the speed allowed by the assistance of whistleblowers.’ “This whistleblower not only helped us open the case, but also provided timely ongoing assistance along with critical documents and testimony that accelerated the pace of our enforcement action.”

A key component of the Dodd-Frank Act is headed to the Supreme Court for review. The court will decide if internal whistleblowers who have not yet reported potential violations to the SEC are protected under the anti-retaliation statutes of Dodd-Frank.

The Supreme Court review is necessary to resolve a split in the lower appellate courts stemming from a case brought by a former Digital Realty Trust Inc executive. In the case, Paul Somers a former employee of Digital Realty seeks to sue for alleged retaliation. Digital Realty had protested a decision by the Ninth Circuit that found that internal whistleblowers were protected under the Dodd-Frank Act’s anti-retaliation statutes, even if they had not yet reported potential violations to the SEC.

Somers’s lawyer, Daniel L. Geyser of Stris and Maher was not surprised by the Supreme Courts willingness to hear the case, although he strongly believed that the Ninth circuits interpretation of the law was in line with the scope of Dodd-Frank as written by Congress.

Even with political clouds of uncertainty from the Trump administration, the head of U.S Securities and Exchange Commission is moving the agency full speed ahead, all the while chastising companies that retaliate or discourage their employees from blowing the whistle on possible securities violations.

Last month, Jane Norberg; the current chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower spoke on a panel at the Practising Law Institute on Corporate Whistleblowing. During the panel, she told attendees that they could expect the same level of enforcement and investigation as in years past.

Open for business

The CFTC Whistleblower program today announced the launch of a news portal, event schedule, and FAQ for its whistleblower program on its website

This new portal will contain industry news, CFTC Events and a FAQ covering the Whistleblower program and information on submitting a whistleblower tip and claiming awards based on accurate tips. The CFTC hopes this newly created section of its site will provide higher quality tips that lead to larger sanctions and more awards being paid out to tipsters.

Some of the tips for Whistleblowers suggested by the CFTC

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced on September 20, 2016 an award of over $4 million to a whistleblower.  The whistleblower’s original information alerted the SEC to a fraud.

The SEC whistleblower program was established by Congress in 2011 to incentivize whistleblowers with specific, timely and credible information about federal securities laws violations to report to the SEC.  Since its inception, the SEC whistleblower program has awarded more than $111 million to 34 whistleblowers.

The SEC lays out the process for a whistleblower.  First, a whistleblower submits a tip to the SEC.  The SEC will then analyze and investigate the tip.  A case will be filed if the tip is fruitful to the SEC and penalties will be ordered.  Notices of the covered actions will then be posted, and the whistleblower will file a claim.  Once the SEC determines the award, between 10 and 30 percent of what the SEC collected when monetary sanctions exceed $1 million, a payout will be made to the whistleblower from the Investor Protection Fund.

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