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Tips for Would-Be SEC Whistleblowers

The SEC’s whistleblower program has been a significant success, with almost $400 million dollars having been awarded to a total of 70 whistleblowers through the program so far. If you are to file an SEC whistleblower claim, it is important you know how to maximize your chances of sharing in recovery.

Here are just a few tips for would-be SEC whistleblowers to keep in mind.

  • Be sure to establish a violation: Do not begin with determining your eligibility for an award. First and foremost you should focus on establishing that a violation actually occurred, and that you have information the SEC will be interested enough in. The SEC receives thousands of whistleblower reports in a given year, and it has limited resource to be able to investigate. Do you actually have a tip that a) concerns a violation serious enough to warrant further investigation and b) actually contains supportive evidence?
  • Determine eligibility: You can start thinking about your eligibility for an award after you’ve determined you have a claim that will interest the SEC. You’ll need to make sure you have evidence of a material violation, and you will have had to have let 120 days pass since initially reporting the violation internally. The information you provide the SEC must also be unique and substantially helpful in either launching an investigation or assisting an ongoing one.
  • Act quickly: When you discover a violation, it is important to be prompt with all of your reporting if you wish to have any chance of sharing in a recovery. Otherwise the SEC will not believe you have been serious about wishing to put a stop to the wrongdoing.
  • Work with an attorney: You should always work with an attorney when blowing the whistle, but especially when your goal is to file a claim with the SEC. A whistleblower attorney will understand the rules associated with the SEC’s program and the process for submitting a claim.

For more information about the steps you should take if you wish to file an SEC whistleblower claim, contact a reliable attorney at Kardell Law Group today.

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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.
  • "Steve Kardell was terrific in representing me in some very adversarial discussions with Citigroup and also later represented me in my testimony before the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission."  -Richard Bowen, Citigroup Whistleblower

  • "Incredible knowledge of employee related concerns and equally brilliant knowledge of health care regulations, standards of practice. I would recommend this firm to anyone."  -V.B.

  • "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

  • "Never thought my career would end like it did after 30 years of service. I was part of the first round of the so called reduction of force. I asked myself how can I be part of this with 30 years of seniority. How did they pick these 90 plus employees? Now, the culture of this organization made you question every decision they made. It wasn’t what you knew it’s was a culture of who you know. Nonetheless, I did not accept their severance package. I immediately starting looking for an attorney who would take on my case. After the initial call to Steve I had hope again. He was open and honest about everything and reassured me he would do his best for me, and he did. I had an awesome outcome. Thanks Steve you’re the best."  -S.S.