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Recent SEC, CFTC Announcements of Whistleblower Payouts

In recent years, the federal government has ramped up efforts to fight corruption in corporate settings, with whistleblowers receiving more protection and rewards for uncovering malevolent schemes within businesses and organizations. Thus, individuals have far more reason to come forward and reveal wrongdoing than ever before.

The following are a few recent announcements made by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) that highlight some recent successes in each agency’s whistleblower program:

  • On March 8, the SEC announced awards worth nearly $2 million to three whistleblowers. The largest of the three awards, worth $1.8 million, was provided to a person who voluntarily stepped up to provide information that led to a successful investigation. The other two whistleblowers provided valuable information after the investigation began, and were awarded $65,000 each for their assistance.
  • On January 15, the SEC announced that, for the first time ever, it would provide an award to a person not employed by a company for providing information that led to a successful enforcement action against that company. The award was worth more than $700,000.
  • On April 4, the CFTC announced an award of $10 million — by far the largest of the three awards handed out so far under that program. The person who received the award gave the agency “original information” that led to the successful enforcement. The previous two awards had only been worth $240,000 and $290,000, respectively.

The SEC and CFTC also commended lawmakers for new legislation issued in the realm of whistleblower law. The Whistleblower Augmented Reward and Non-Retaliation Act of 2016 expands protections for individuals who blow the whistle on financial crimes.

With these extra incentives for potential whistleblowers, it’s more important than ever for businesses and organizations to protect themselves. For further guidance, contact an experienced Dallas attorney at Whistleblower Law for Managers.

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In his new book, "Standing Up to China: How a Whistleblower Risked Everything for His Country," former client & Author, Ashley Yablon, quotes Attorney Steve Kardell about Whistelblower Law.
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  • "Reaching out to Steve Kardell was the best decision I made. His ability to provide immediate insight and direction was very powerful, and a huge relief during a very stressful time period. For anyone struggling with a whistleblower situation, I would highly recommend at least speaking with Steve. After a 10 minute call with him, I had a better understanding of what I was dealing with. Even better, he gave me some immediate hope. In the end Steve did a better job than I thought was possible. Steve was able to get in contact with people in my organization, that I didn’t have access to. Because of his years of experience, he already has contacts in many organizations in Dallas. The entire situation was handled peacefully. I was impressed by his ability to “keep the peace”–rather than creating a battle with the organization. The reason I didn’t reach out to a lawyer initially, was because I thought it would mean an immediate end to any hope of a positive relationship with the company. Steve was able to address my concerns, and in the end I was able to continue to work for them."  -KS

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