Whistleblower Protection Policies

News & Analysis as of

SEC Whistleblower Program May Be Facing Congressional Cutback

According to a memo circulating amongst Republican-party leaders as of February 13th, Republicans in the House of Representatives are planning to propose a significant curtailment of the U.S. Securities and Exchange...more

The Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016: A Year Later By The Numbers

It has been almost a year since the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (DTSA) took effect. Since Forbes Magazine called the DTSA the “Biggest IP Development in Years,” we thought it might be helpful to take a look at how often...more

Bank Whistleblower Suits Highlight Limits of Employee Confidentiality Agreements

Employers increasingly face the difficult scenario of employees who misappropriate company data in the pursuit of whistleblower claims alleging misconduct by the employer. Such cases can present a complex mix of regulatory,...more

General Counsel Permitted to Use Attorney-Client Privileged Information in Whistleblower Retaliation Case

In a recent case, Wadler v. Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. case number 3:15-cv-02356 (2016), the federal court in the Northern District of California ruled that the plaintiff and former general counsel of Bio-Rad Laboratories...more

S.D.N.Y. Dismisses Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Retaliation Claim

In one of the first cases to address the standard governing a motion for summary judgment in a Dodd-Frank whistleblower retaliation case, Judge Jed S. Rakoff ruled that two former executives of Vista Outdoor Inc. (the...more

Healthcare Litigation - February 2017

HCQIA Preemption of State Physician Whistleblower Statutes - Medical professionals who are subject to adverse actions following peer review often seek to sue the peer review participants (including the individual...more

SEC Whistleblower Protection: Recent Cautionary Tales and New Best Practices

Although 2017 has barely begun, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has continued to aggressively pursue enforcement actions against companies for whistleblower-related violations. As part of its initiative, the SEC...more

Federal Trade Secrets Act

At long last, there is a federal civil cause of action for trade secret misappropriation under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) enacted in 2016. The DTSA complements state law remedies, which are not preempted,...more

Health Update - February 2017

Securing the Safety Net for America's Vulnerable Populations - Editor's Note: America's population is aging rapidly. By 2029, 75 million baby boomers will have reached age 65 and older, and older adults will represent...more

Whistleblower General Counsel Prevails Through Use Of Attorney-Client Privileged Information

In a seminal trial court decision, the federal court in the Northern District of California ruled in a whistleblower retaliation case that a fired general counsel of Bio-Rad Laboratories could use as evidence otherwise...more

2016’s Top Patent and Trade Secret Developments for Chemistry and Nanotechnology

While 2016 saw several significant IP developments regarding the USPTO claim construction standard and the standard of review of USPTO decisions, the following three developments may have the greatest impact on how in-house...more

Florida Whistleblower Act Requires Showing of Actual Violation, Federal Court Rules

Florida’s private-sector Whistleblower Act (“FWA”) protects only those employees who can show an actual violation of a law, rule, or regulation, a federal district court has held. Graddy v. Wal-Mart Stores East, LP, No....more

Revenge of the Whistle-blower: Possible Consequences of Compliance Failures

In a company with a robust compliance culture, potential whistleblowers can express their concerns without fear of retribution. By contrast, the penalty for a culture that silences whistleblowers just got steeper. Companies...more

Bio-Rad Stung by Nearly $8 Million Verdict in Whistleblower Lawsuit Brought by Former General Counsel

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...more

Federal Whistleblower Laws Collide With The Attorney-Client Privilege: The Bio-Rad Case Study

Seyfarth Synopsis: Federal whistleblower laws collide with the in-house attorney-client privilege. The trial round goes to the whistleblower. The expected appellate round has still not been fought. In a February 7,...more

A Primer on “Cross-Referencing” the DTSA Whistleblower Immunity Provision Following 4 Simple Steps

In the spring of 2016, the Defend Trade Secrets Act (“DTSA” or “Act”) was signed into law providing trade secret owners for the first time a federal civil cause of action for trade secret misappropriation. Although the DTSA...more

The SEC Expands Enforcement Program Based Upon Standard Corporate Separation Agreements

We have alerted you on two prior occasions regarding the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) imposing substantial fines and other penalties based solely on “boilerplate” language commonly found in corporate severance...more

"Trump Expected to Alter Labor Laws, Policies"

Editor’s note: This article was updated on February 1, 2017, to reflect new developments. While President Donald Trump has not discussed in detail how he plans to address labor and employment issues, he likely will...more

Proskauer To Present On Whistleblower Developments At ABA Midwinter Meeting

On February 24, 2017 at 10:30 am, Proskauer Partner Connie Bertram will speak on “Whistleblower Provisions of Sarbanes Oxley” at the American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law’s Federal Labor Standards...more

US Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Enforcement Division Issues Advisories on Cooperation

The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Division of Enforcement issued two new Enforcement Advisories outlining the factors the Enforcement Division will consider in evaluating cooperation by individuals and companies...more

Employment Law Commentary - Volume 29, Issue 1

The Cost Of Keeping Things Quiet: Crackdown On Confidentiality Clauses Calls For Explicit Carve-Outs - In last February’s Employment Law Commentary, we discussed best practices for drafting separation agreements. Among...more

UK Financial Services Whistleblowing Regulation Survey: Assessing The Impact Of The FCA/PRA Senior Managers Regime Whistleblowing...

NAVEX Global partnered with an independent research firm to survey compliance professionals from the UK Financial Services industry about their approach to whistleblowing and incident reporting. Our findings provide insight...more

Gavel to Gavel: Trade secrets now a federal case

Almost all businesses possess at least some trade secrets, which could include a wide variety of information, including customer lists, formulas, manufacturing processes, data compilations, marketing plans and many other...more

Proskauer Represents Employer Against Former Executive Found Liable for Snooping on Boss’s and Others’ Emails

A former employee of the upscale outdoor furniture designer and manufacturer Brown Jordan recently failed in his bid to pursue whistleblower retaliation claims against the company and also found himself liable for snooping on...more

2016 Year-End Securities Litigation and Enforcement Highlights

Welcome to the 2016 Year-End Report from the BakerHostetler Securities Litigation and Regulatory Enforcement Practice Team. The purpose of this Report is to provide a periodic survey, apart from our team Executive...more

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