There was a time when whistleblowers were met with negative repercussions and hostility from employers and the business community at large. This prompted Congress to enact the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in 2010. This was in part due to the 2007/2008 economic recession that was largely brought about by selfish actions of Wall Street investors.
One of the new reforms that the Dodd-Frank act brought about was a comprehensive whistleblower program. The program provides financial incentives and employment protection for any individual who reports violations of set federal securities laws. The act is the most sweeping overhaul of financial regulations in the United States since the 1930 Great Depression.
Lebaton Sucharow was one of the first law firms to establish an exclusive practice that focused on advocating and protecting SEC whistleblowers. The firm’s Whistleblower Representation Practice is a leading securities litigation platform that employs a world-class team of in-house investigators, forensic accountants and financial analysts. All personnel working at the firm are experienced in state and federal law enforcement to enable them provide unmatched representation for whistleblowers.
The practice is led by seasoned lawyer Jordan A. Thomas, a former Assistant Chief Litigation Counsel (Enforcement Division) and Assistant Director of the SEC. Throughout his time at the SEC, Thomas played a leading role in developing the whistleblower program. He was also involved in drafting the legislation and the final implantation process.
The whistleblower practice at Lebaton Sucharow is important in the fight against securities malpractices in the country. It is important to fully enforce the changes brought about by the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act. The firm offers free initial consultations, case evaluations and translation services for international whistleblowers. It also ensures its clients’ protection and confidentiality under the attorney-client privilege.
The Rules of the Whistleblower Program
The Securities and Exchange Commission is required by law to pay any eligible whistleblower a sum of 10 to 30 percent of the total monetary sanctions collected from a successful enforcement action. However, payment will only be made if the sanctions collected exceed $1 million. Once this threshold is met, eligible whistleblowers may also be entitled to additional rewards based on the monetary sanctions that are collected as a result of legal actions brought by any other law enforcement or regulatory organization.
The Dodd-Frank Act further prohibits any form of retaliatory actions against whistleblowers by their employers. Whistleblowers may be allowed to anonymously report possible securities violations only when represented by a lawyer.