The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently announced that it issued its largest whistleblower award ever, breaking the previous record of a $30 million award it handed out in 2014.
The SEC split a $50 million pot between two whistleblowers, with one taking home more than $33 million. No further information was provided about the case in question or the whistleblowers themselves, as the agency does not identify whistleblowers and attempts to provide as little information as possible about the cases to protect individuals’ identities.
Since the SEC’s whistleblower program was instituted in 2011 and distributed its first award in 2012, it has issued a total of $262 million in awards to 53 total whistleblowers. Whistleblowers in the program can collect anywhere between 10 and 30 percent of monetary sanctions when those sanctions exceed more than $1 million.
There are other routes for whistleblowers to report wrongdoing if their cases are likely to be worth less than $1 million — the SEC program is just reserved for larger-value securities cases. The federal government over the last several years has expanded the options available for whistleblowers, the protections afforded to them and the potential they have to earn significant rewards for their assistance in uncovering wrongdoing.
While the SEC whistleblower program was initially the most-used outlet for would-be whistleblowers, the number of submitted whistleblower complaints through other federal programs have begun to catch up within the last couple years.
For more information on the options available to you when serving as a whistleblower, speak with a knowledgeable Dallas attorney at Kardell Law Group.