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SEC Announces $3.5 Million Whistleblower Award

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently announced a $3.5 million whistleblower award, the first of three awards handed out within the span of a week.

The whistleblower was an employee who provided a unique, helpful tip that gave new life to an ongoing investigation on a company. The additional evidence of wrongdoing provided by the tip bolstered the SEC’s case and ultimately led to a successful enforcement action.

More whistleblower awards of late

With three awards totaling more than $10 million offered within less than a week, there has been a flurry of whistleblower awards from the SEC recently. Part of this is because the SEC has gone to great lengths to ensure whistleblowers have more avenues to report wrongdoing than ever before. Additionally, SEC officials say the quality of tips they have been receiving has been steadily improving, which indicates efforts to educate the general public about whistleblower actions have been effective.

After accounting for all three of these latest whistleblower awards, there has now been more than $68 million handed out to 31 different whistleblowers under the SEC program. Whistleblowers are eligible to receive between 10 and 30 percent of money collected whenever enforcement actions lead to sanctions totaling more than $1 million.

This particular award was one of the most lucrative provided to an SEC whistleblower. At the time it was handed out, it was the third-largest award yet, but it was beat out just a couple of days later by a $5 million award. A $30 million award from 2014 and a $14 million award from 2013 still occupy the top two spots on the list.

If you would like to ensure your company has processes in place to respond to whistleblower issues, meet with the experienced Dallas attorneys at Whistleblower Law for Managers.

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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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