News & Analysis as of

SEC Sweep on NDAs Restricting Whistleblowers

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the SEC is in the midst of a sweep to crack down on companies’ use of NDAs or employment agreements that might impede whistleblower reporting in violation of Dodd-Frank...more

The SEC Will Be Your Employment Law Agency, Too

The nature of the SEC’s business a regulator of public companies lends a certain expansive aspect to its jurisdiction. That is, when your job as a government agency is to be sure public companies are making complete and...more

Does Former Officer Have An Obligation To Turn Over Whistleblower Award?

Monday, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced “a whistleblower award payout between $475,000 and $575,000 to a former company officer who reported original, high-quality information about a securities fraud that...more

SEC May Seek Companies’ Agreements to Determine Whistleblower Treatment

The SEC continues to focus on its whistleblower initiative. According to a February 25 Wall Street Journal article titled “SEC Probes Companies’ Treatment of Whistleblowers,” the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission...more

SEC Continues to Investigate Contractual Impediments to Whistleblower Complaints

As Rachel Louise Ensign reported earlier this week in the Wall Street Journal (subscription required), the Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”) continues to probe obstacles to corporate employees blowing the whistle. This...more

Whistleblower Laws Increasingly Vital for Government Enforcement Efforts

In 2014, a crewman aboard a Japanese cargo ship videotaped the vessel illegally dumping oily waste into the ocean and later turned the tape over to the U.S. Coast Guard. One year later, the resulting $1.8 million penalty for...more

Another SEC Whistleblower Amicus Brief On Whether Dodd-Frank Covers Internal Complaints

On February 6, the SEC filed its third amicus brief defending its interpretive rule on Dodd-Frank’s anti-retaliation provision, 15 U.S.C. §78u-6(h)(1). The impetus is a ruling out of the Southern District of New York in...more

To Whom Must The Whistle Blow? SEC Asks Second Circuit for Deference on Scope of Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Protection

In an amicus brief filed earlier this month in Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy LCC, the SEC asked the Second Circuit to defer to the Commission and hold that individuals who report misconduct internally are covered by the...more

SEC Argues in Second Circuit Amicus Brief That Dodd-Frank Protects Inside Whistleblowers

On February 6, the Securities Exchange Commission filed an amicus brief advising the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit that the whistleblower protections of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer...more

Court Finds Naming Names in Public Filings and Imprudent Emails Support Action For Retaliation

In Celia Greengrass v. International Monetary Systems, Ltd., 2015 WL 137891, (7th Cir. Jan. 12, 2015), the Seventh Circuit relied in part on the fact that an employer identified a former employee by name in its discussion of...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume X, Issue 7

In this issue: - CFTC’s Energy and Environmental Markets Advisory Committee To Hold Meeting - CFTC Announces Members of Market Risk Advisory Committee - NFA Notifies SDs and MSPs of Annual Questionnaire...more

2014—A Record-Setting Year for Whistleblowers

2014 was a record-breaking year for whistleblowers, including both the U.S. Department of Justice’s prosecution of cases under the False Claims Act (FCA) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s prosecution of cases...more

Select Broker-Dealer Enforcement Cases and Developments: 2014 Year in Review

This Outline highlights key U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC” or the “Commission”) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) enforcement developments and cases regarding broker dealers.* The...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The Commission recently filed an amicus brief defending its Dodd-Frank whistleblower rules. Those rules specify that the anti-retaliation provisions of those amendments to the Exchange Act protect those who chose not to...more

SEC: Whistleblower Protections Extend To Those Who Report Internally

A critical component of the SEC’s whistleblower program is the anti-retaliatory provisions of Exchange Act Section 21F, added to the statute by the Dodd-Frank Act. To implement that provision the Commission promulgated two...more

"Aggressive SEC Enforcement Approach Creates New Challenges for Resolving Investigations"

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) pursued aggressive enforcement of the securities laws in the past year. Several trends related to the SEC's vigorous approach are likely to continue in 2015....more

A Look Back at SEC Whistleblowers in 2014

In retrospect, 2014 has to be considered a success for the whistleblower program run by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This year, whistleblowers who earned awards through the SEC earned more money...more

FCPA Compliance and Ethics Report-Episode 122-with Matt Kelly on Alstom, Avon and Petrobras [Video]

In this episode, Compliance Week Editor-in-Chief Matt Kelly and I discuss the Avon and Alstom FCPA enforcement actions and then take a look at the ongoing Petrobras corruption scandal and what it means for Brazil. ...more

2014 Top 10 SEC Enforcement Highlights

Mary Jo White was confirmed in April 2013 as Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), becoming the first former United States Attorney to serve in that role. Given her background, and despite criticism...more

2015 Trends: #5 Regulatory Enforcement Moves Down Market

While ethics and compliance scandals that implicate brand name companies tend to grab the headlines, smaller organizations have always borne the brunt of regulatory enforcement. Over the years, U.S. Sentencing Commission data...more

A Review of Recent Whistleblower Developments

SEC Whistleblower Office 2014 Annual Report Details Rising Number of Tips and Increasing Awards - On November 17, 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Whistleblower Office issued its Fiscal Year 2014...more

FCPA Compliance and Ethics Report-Episode 117-the Avon FCPA Enforcement Action [Video]

In this episode I take a deep dive into the recent concluded Avon FCPA enforcement action. ...more

New York Times: Bounty Programs Incentivize Wrongdoers to Collect

We have seen a number of substantial whistleblower awards make headlines this year, but a recent article on nytimes.com discusses the potential downsides of government-sponsored bounty programs: rewarding whistleblowers by...more

The Avon FCPA Settlement, Part II

I am back from my holiday break and am looking forward to many good ideas for blogs in the coming year. However before we get to 2015, I have to finish out some matters from 2014. Today I continue my look at the Avon Foreign...more

Overview of Compliance Concerns Raised by Recent U.S. SEC Whistleblower Developments

The recent release of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) annual report to Congress on the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program highlights the growing reliance of U.S. Government authorities on whistleblowers to...more

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