Published: September 13, 2017

​A trial court in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania recently ruled that the whistleblower protections of the Dodd-Frank Act and Sarbanes-Oxley Act (“SOX”) do not necessarily apply to employees of private entities, even if those entities perform work for publicly-traded companies.  The court reached this conclusion in dismissing the Plaintiff’s complaint in Reyher v. Grant Thornton LLP, No. 16-CV-1757.

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Published: February 22, 2017

The Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, Jeb Hensarling, R-Tex., recently issued a memo outlining a plan to implement sweeping changes to a bill he introduced last year known as the Financial CHOICE Act. Hensarling’s five-page memorandum, titled “CHOICE Act 2.0 Changes,” outlines revisions to the draft legislation which could strip significant power from the SEC and sharply impact that agency’s Whistleblower Program.

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Published: February 14, 2017

A jury recently found Bio-Rad Laboratories liable under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the Dodd-Frank Act for nearly $8 million in damages after the company’s alleged retaliatory firing of its former general counsel, Sanford Wadler.  The jury awarded Wadler $2.96 for past economic loss as a result of the termination and $5 million in punitive damages, after just three hours of deliberation.

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Published: May 20, 2016

On May 13th and 17th, 2016, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that it had given awards of over $3.5 million and $5 million to two different whistleblowers. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act created the SEC’s whistleblower program in 2010.  The award of $5 million was the third largest whistleblower award ever issued by the SEC’s whistleblower program. 
 

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Published: April 11, 2016

The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced on April 4, 2016 that it awarded over $10 million to a whistleblower.  This is the largest award made by the CFTC’s Whistleblower Program. 
 

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Published: September 25, 2015

On September 10, 2015, the Second Circuit held that an employee who reports wrongdoing internally -- but not to the SEC -- is protected under the whistleblower provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act.  In Berman v. Neo@Ogilvie LLC, the plaintiff, a finance director of the defendant, alleged that he was fired after internally reporting that some of the defendant’s practices amounted to accounting fraud. He did not timely report any allegedly unlawful activities to the SEC.

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Published: March 26, 2015

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) plans to award between $475,000 and $575,000 to a former company officer who reported “original, high-quality information about a securities fraud that resulted in an SEC enforcement action with sanctions exceeding $1 million.”  Generally, company officers, directors, trustees or partners who learn about fraud through internal reports are not eligible for whistleblower awards.

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Published: December 10, 2014

In Brief:

The Securities and Exchange Commission has unveiled new data about tipsters who report corporate wrongdoing under the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program. This whistleblower profile data is a powerful tool that can help businesses prudently address the concerns of those whistleblowers most likely to report to SEC.

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Published: September 30, 2014

In Brief

  • The Securities and Exchange Commission awarded $300,000 to a whistleblower who performed audit and compliance functions at a company.

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