Steven J. Pearlman

Steven J. Pearlman

Proskauer Rose LLP

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SEC’s Second Amicus Brief On Whether Dodd-Frank Protects Internal Reports

On December 11, 2014, the SEC filed an amicus brief in support of Plaintiff-Appellant Mikael Safarian asking the Third Circuit to revive his Dodd-Frank whistleblower claim and endorse the agency’s definition of...more

12/23/2014 - Dodd-Frank Employer Liability Issues Reporting Requirements Retaliation SEC Whistleblower Protection Policies Whistleblowers

3d Cir.: Dodd-Frank Anti-Arbitration Provisions Do Not Apply To Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Retaliation Claims

On December 8, 2014, the Third Circuit ruled that Dodd-Frank’s anti-arbitration provisions do not invalidate pre-dispute arbitration agreements with respect to whistleblower retaliation claims brought pursuant to the...more

12/15/2014 - Adverse Employment Action Arbitration Dodd-Frank Employer Liability Issues Retaliation TD Ameritrade Whistleblowers

Cal. App. Court Finds in Favor of “Whistleblower” Who Never Blew the Whistle

In Diego v. Pilgrim United Church of Christ, — Cal.Rptr.3d —-, 2014 WL 6602601 (Cal. App. 4 Dist.), the California Court of Appeal determined that Cecilia Diego (Plaintiff) could pursue a common law public policy retaliation...more

12/11/2014 - Adverse Employment Action Churches Corporate Counsel Employer Liability Issues Public Policy Retaliation Whistleblower Protection Policies Whistleblowers Wrongful Termination

ARB Affirms Blacklisting Award To Whistleblower

The ARB upheld a damages award in favor of a whistleblower after his former employer purportedly “blacklisted” him by providing an apparently negative employment reference to a prospective employer. Timmons v. CRST Dedicated...more

10/16/2014 - Blacklist Commercial Truck Drivers Corporate Counsel Employer Liability Issues Former Employee Reference Checks Retaliation Trucking Industry Whistleblower Awards Whistleblowers Workplace Hazards

Court Affirms $3M Jury Award In Illinois Whistleblower Action

On August 28, 2014, Judge James McCarthy issued a decision in Crawley v. Chicago State University, Case No. 10 L 12657 (Cook County, Ill., Law Div.), affirming payment of over $3 million to Plaintiff James Crowley...more

10/10/2014 - Chicago State University Colleges Jury Awards Retaliation Universities Whistleblowers

Another Hefty OSHA Whistleblower Award + Reinstatement

On September 26, 2014, OSHA issued a preliminary order that an Illinois employer, Stericycle Inc. (the Company), reinstate and pay $262,000 to a supervisor who was discharged after allegedly reporting safety concerns to...more

10/3/2014 - Adverse Employment Action Consent Order Employer Liability Issues OSHA Reinstatement Retaliation Surface Transportation Whistleblower Awards Whistleblowers Workplace Hazards

Second Circuit Strays From “Definitively and Specifically” Standard But Still Dismisses SOX Claim

On August 8, 2014, the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a SOX whistleblower retaliation claim brought by a former AECOM Technology Corp. (“Company”) employee, holding that he did not engage in protected activity...more

8/14/2014 - Corporate Counsel Retaliation Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblowers

Eleventh Circuit Sustains Award To Employer In Whistleblower Case

In a warning to plaintiffs’ counsel who seek emotional distress damages for alleged whistleblower retaliation under Florida law, the Eleventh Circuit in Smith v. Psychiatric Solutions, Inc., 750 F.3d 1253 (11th Cir. May 6,...more

7/11/2014 - Attorney's Fees Emotional Distress Damages Employer Liability Issues Retaliation Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblowers

SEC Brings First Dodd-Frank Anti-Retaliation Case

The SEC recently issued an Order against Paradigm Capital Management, Inc. (Paradigm), a registered investment adviser, and its principal for allegedly engaging in principal trades without effective client disclosure and...more

6/27/2014 - Dodd-Frank Enforcement Actions Retaliation SEC

Nebraska District Court: Employee’s Disclosures To FINRA Make Her A Dodd-Frank Whistleblower

In a first-impression decision, the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska recently ruled that an employee who disclosed information about potential securities law violations to FINRA may qualify as a...more

6/3/2014 - Adverse Employment Action Dodd-Frank FINRA Hiring & Firing Retaliation SEC Securities Whistleblowers

Another Bite At the Apple? OSHA to Notify Untimely OSH Act Whistleblowers of Potential NLRB Claims

The NLRB Office of the General Counsel recently issued a memorandum stating that the NLRB entered into a “referral agreement” with OSHA, which requires OSHA to inform whistleblowers that certain untimely filed retaliation...more

6/2/2014 - Filing Deadlines NLRB OSHA Retaliation Whistleblowers

OSHA Releases Interim Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Regulations

OSHA recently released the interim final text of regulations implementing the whistleblower protection provision (Section 1057) in Dodd-Frank. The interim final regulations establish the timing and processes for handling...more

4/14/2014 - Administrative Review Board ALJ Dodd-Frank DOL OSHA Retaliation Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Protection Policies

SEC’s Amicus Brief: Internal Whistleblower Reports Covered By Dodd-Frank Anti-Retaliation Provision

As we previously discussed, courts have struggled with determining the scope of the protections in Dodd-Frank’s anti-retaliation provisions. On the one hand, Dodd-Frank defines a “whistleblower” as any individual, or group of...more

3/21/2014 - Anti-Retaliation Provisions Dodd-Frank Retaliation Sarbanes-Oxley SEC Whistleblowers

Illinois Whistleblower Awarded $3 Million Following Jury Trial

In what appears to be an alarming trend for employers, the Chicago Tribune recently reported that a former Chicago State University employee was awarded $3 million after a Cook County, Illinois jury found that the University...more

3/18/2014 - Corporate Counsel Jury Trial Jury Verdicts Retaliation Whistleblower Awards Whistleblowers

SEC’s Strategic Plan Includes Reliance On Whistleblower Tips

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published (for public comment) a draft strategic plan, which sets forth its goals and objectives for fiscal years 2014 through 2018. The SEC’s “strategic objectives” include:...more

2/11/2014 - Dodd-Frank Retaliation SEC Whistleblowers

Georgia Federal Court Rules That Dodd-Frank Whistleblowers Are Not Entitled To A Jury Trial

On November 12, 2013, a Georgia district court ruled that Dodd-Frank whistleblowers are not entitled to a jury trial or punitive damages. Pruett v. BlueLinx Holdings, Inc., No. 13-cv-02607 (N.D. Ga., Nov. 12, 2013). This is a...more

11/14/2013 - Dodd-Frank Jury Trial Punitive Damages Retaliation Trials Whistleblower Protection Policies Whistleblowers

N.D. Ill. Denies Employer Summary Judgment On Retaliation Claim, Stressing Shifting Explanation For Discharge

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois recently ruled that a retaliation claim survived summary judgment because of the “convincing mosaic” of evidence of retaliation the Plaintiff presented,...more

11/12/2013 - Discrimination EEOC Evidence Hiring & Firing Retaliation Summary Judgment Termination

Sixth Circuit: Failure to Exhaust Administrative Remedies Not A Jurisdictional Bar For Title VII Retaliation Claim

On August 13, 2013, the Sixth Circuit reinstated a retaliation claim under Title VII, reversing the dismissal of the claim on jurisdictional grounds for failure to exhaust administrative remedies with the EEOC....more

8/27/2013 - Administrative Remedies Civil Rights Act EEOC Jurisdiction Retaliation Title VII Whistleblowers

NJ Jury Renders $2.1 Million Punitive Damage Award in Whistleblower Case

In a recent lawsuit before the Superior Court of New Jersey in Hudson County, a jury unanimously awarded $2.1 million in punitive damages to a hospital lab technician after finding his employer retaliated against him for...more

6/24/2013 - CEPA Jury Verdicts Punitive Damages Retaliation Whistleblowers

Fifth Circuit: No Fee Shifting For Title VII Mixed-Motive Retaliation Claims

On April 3, 2013, the Fifth Circuit affirmed a ruling from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas that a plaintiff was not entitled to attorney’s fees and costs under Title VII (42 U.S.C. § 2000 e-5(g))...more

4/18/2013 - Discrimination Fee-Shifting Statutes Harassment Mixed Motive Cases Retaliation Title VII

District of Colorado Expansively Construes Protected Activity Under Dodd-Frank, But Finds No Causation

The U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado followed a trend of decisions concluding that a plaintiff need not have provided the SEC with information regarding alleged federal securities law violations to pursue a...more

4/5/2013 - Dodd-Frank Hiring & Firing Protected Activity Retaliation SEC Termination Whistleblowers

Retaliatory Discharge Under Illinois Law: “Public Policy” Strictly Interpreted Once Again

An Illinois state court of appeals recently held that the Cook County Department of Public Health (“Cook County”) was not liable for common law retaliatory discharge because plaintiff/appellant failed to identify a cognizable...more

3/28/2013 - Hiring & Firing Public Policy Retaliation Safety Precautions Termination Training

$28 Million Verdict Against Illinois Nursing Home Liable Under False Claims Act & Illinois Whistleblower Reward And Protection Act

On February 11, 2013, a jury in federal district court in Illinois found a nursing home operator (Company) liable under the False Claims Act and the Illinois Whistleblower Reward and Protection Act for fraudulent billing and...more

2/26/2013 - False Claims Act Nursing Homes Retaliation Whistleblower Protection Policies Worthless Services Claims

Eleventh Circuit: Liquidated Damages For FLSA Retaliation Discretionary, Not Mandatory

The Eleventh Circuit joined the Sixth and Eighth Circuits in holding that liquidated damages awards for FLSA retaliation claims are discretionary, not mandatory. Moore v. Appliance Direct, Inc., No. 11-cv-15227 (11th Cir....more

2/25/2013 - Appliance Direct Damages FLSA Hiring & Firing Independent Contractors Liquidated Damages Retaliation Termination Trucking Industry

District Court Widens Split On Whether Complaints Of Alleged Future Misconduct Are Protected

The U.S. District Court for the Central District of California ruled that a SOX whistleblower complaint survived a Rule 12(b)(6) challenge on “reasonable belief” grounds and found that complaints of potential future...more

2/18/2013 - Board of Directors Corporate Bonuses Federal Rule 12(b)(6) Fraud Internal Controls Playboy Potential Future Violations Retaliation Sarbanes-Oxley SEC Split of Authority Termination Whistleblowers

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