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Securities Administrative Agency Civil Rights

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Securities issues written by leading professionals.

Former CFO Awarded $1.9 Million In SOX Case

An ALJ at the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently ruled that a former CFO was entitled to approximately $1.9 million in back pay, front pay, and compensatory damages, concluding that he was retaliated against in violation...more

Proskauer Joins Heads of SEC & OSHA Whistleblower Programs in Webinar

On September 27, 2016, Proskauer Partner Steven J. Pearlman, co-head of the Whistleblowing & Retaliation Practice Group, participated in a Bloomberg webinar with Jane Norberg, Acting Chief of the SEC Office of the...more

Recent SEC Enforcement Actions Prompt Consideration of Whistleblower Carve-outs

The recent settlement of SEC enforcement actions concerning the Dodd Frank Act’s whistleblower provisions are prompting companies and their counsels to evaluate current and prospective severance and confidentiality agreements...more

Public Companies to Revise Employee Confidentiality and Severance Provisions

by Sherman & Howard L.L.C. on

The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) issued two Cease and Desist Orders that dramatically change the landscape for employee contractual confidentiality provisions, as well as for employee waiver and release...more

Standard Severance Agreements May Need to Be Revised

by Snell & Wilmer on

Many employers offer severance agreements to departing employees which, at least in part, are designed to protect the employer from disclosures of confidential information and from any future claims or recovery by the...more

Wisconsin District Court Follows 5th Circuit: Internal Tipsters Are Not Considered “Whistleblowers” Under Dodd-Frank

On August 12, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin in Lamb v. Rockwell Automation Inc., No. 15-CV-1415-JPS (E.D. Wis. Aug. 12, 2016) held that the Dodd-Frank whistleblower protection provision...more

The Whistle Blows Again: SEC Pays Second Largest Whistleblower Bounty Award

On June 9, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘SEC”) awarded the second largest whistleblower bounty – $17 million – granted under the Dodd-Frank whistleblower rules to date. Previously, the highest whistleblower...more

Final Diversity and Inclusion Standards Issued Jointly by Six Federal Agencies

by Ballard Spahr LLP on

Pursuant to a mandate contained in Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank or Act), six federal agencies jointly issued new Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Standards today. These...more

Sixth Circuit Rejects “Definitively, Specifically” Standard for SarbOx Whistleblower Claims

by Burr & Forman on

The Sixth Circuit this week rejected the “definitively and specifically” standard that had required a Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower’s “reasonable belief” to closely track each element of the legal cause of action for the fraud...more

Expanded Whistleblower Protections Impact Confidentiality Policies and Agreements

by Akerman LLP - HR Defense on

All employers should review their confidentiality policies and agreements to ensure adequate protections for whistleblowers in the wake of recent actions by both the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and the National...more

Whistle While You Work: SEC Announces First Retaliation Whistleblower Award

On June 16, 2014, the SEC issued its first-ever charge of whistleblower retaliation under section 922 of the Dodd-Frank Act, charging a hedge fund advisor and its owner with “engaging in prohibited principal transactions and...more

Dodd-Frank of the North? Incentive-Based Whistleblower Program Coming to Canada

by Thomas Fox on

It will be of significant interest to US corporations that make securities filings with the Ontario Securities Commissions (“OSC”), that on February 3, 2015, the OSC published “Staff Consultation Paper 15-401”, which sets out...more

WSJ Report On Delayed SEC Whistleblower Bounty Awards

A Wall Street Journal article (subscription required) dated May 4, 2015 reports that a backlog of tips received by the SEC Office of the Whistleblower as part of its bounty program has resulted in a delay in paying awards to...more

SEC Announces a Maximum Whistleblower Award to an Employee Who Faced Employment Retaliation as a Consequence of Reporting...

by Ropes & Gray LLP on

In June of last year, Paradigm Capital Management agreed to pay the SEC nearly $2 million to settle allegations that it violated the Dodd-Frank Act’s conflict-of-interest rules and unlawfully retaliated against the...more

A Compilation of Enforcement and Non-Enforcement Actions

by Foley & Lardner LLP on

The SEC announced that a compliance professional has been awarded $1.4 million to $1.6 million for reporting misconduct inside his firm to the SEC. The SEC recently noted that it has paid $50 million to 17 whistleblowers, out...more

King Arthur Week – The Green Knight and the Protection of Whistleblowers – Part IV

by Thomas Fox on

We continue our King Arthur themed week with an exploration of one of the most interesting characters in the Arthur canon, The Green Knight, so called because his skin and clothes are green. The meaning of his greenness has...more

SEC Grants Compliance Officer $1.4 to $1.6 Million Whistleblower Award

On April 22, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it is awarding a compliance officer between $1.4 million and $1.6 million for voluntarily providing the SEC with information that contributed to a successful...more

SEC Makes Whistleblower Award in Connection With Retaliation Case

The SEC announced a maximum whistleblower award payment of 30 percent of amounts collected in connection with In the Matter of Paradigm Capital Management, Inc. and Candace King Weir, File No. 3-15930 (June 16, 2014), the...more

SEC Joins Agency Attack on Confidentiality Clauses in Employee-Related Agreements and Policies

In a recent enforcement action, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) took action against a company for "using improperly restrictive language in confidentiality agreements with the potential to stifle the...more

Proskauer Participates With Head of SEC Whistleblower Program in 4/22/15 Webinar

Proskauer Partner Connie N. Bertram, co-head of the Whistleblowing & Retaliation Practice, participated in a webinar last week with Sean McKessy, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower. The webinar, sponsored by the...more

Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Compliance Officer Whistles His Way to a Million Dollar Pay Day

Last week the SEC announced an award of between $1.4 to $1.6 million to a whistleblower who provided information that assisted the SEC in an enforcement action. The enforcement action against the whistleblower’s company...more

Confidentiality Clauses Under Increasing Scrutiny by Federal Agencies

by Franczek Radelet P.C. on

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has become the latest federal agency to challenge the legality of employee confidentiality requirements. Earlier this month, the SEC instituted its first administrative proceeding...more

Another Whistleblower Award Wrinkle

There is no longer any doubt that the SEC is serious about implementing its whistleblower program. According its most recent award announcement, the program has now paid more than $50 million to whistleblowers since its 2011...more

SEC Awards ~$1.5M to Whistleblowing Compliance Officer

by Burr & Forman on

Earlier this week, the SEC approved a whistleblower award of between $1.4-1.6 million to a compliance officer. Ordinarily, the Commission will not consider information to be “derived from [a whistleblower’s] independent...more

SEC Announces Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Award for Compliance Professional

by Ropes & Gray LLP on

On Wednesday, April 22nd, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it had awarded approximately $1.5 million to a whistleblower who had served as a compliance officer of the company about which he blew the...more

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