SEC Whistleblower Blog

SEC Will Require Admission of Guilt in Some Civil Settlements

June 20, 2013
Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) Chairman Mary Jo White announced on Tuesday, June 18, 2013, that the Commission will begin requiring admission of guilt in certain types of civil settlements, according to the Washington Post.  The announcement comes in the midst of an ongoing controversy that arguably began in 2011,...

SEC Issues Second Reward Under Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Incentive Provision

June 14, 2013
On Wednesday, June 12, 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) issued its second-ever whistleblower award under the whistleblower provisions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (“Dodd-Frank”).  The award was made to three whistleblowers who provided information leading to the...

SEC's Cohen Predicts "Extremely Significant Whistleblower Awards" Coming Soon

June 13, 2013
Securities whistleblowers may have reason to celebrate soon, according to Stephen Cohen, the Associate Director of the Enforcement Division of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”).  At a panel at the Corporate Crime Reporter conference last month held at the National Press Club, Cohen stated that within the next...

SEC Intends to Shift Focus Back to Accounting Fraud

June 6, 2013
The Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), Mary Jo White, is leading a charge to shift the agency’s civil enforcement action focus to accounting fraud, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal.  The article noted that from 2003 to 2005, such cases constituted more than 25 percent of the...

Deputy Chief of SEC Whistleblower Office Discusses Contractual Limitations on Reporting

June 4, 2013
Jane Norberg, the Deputy Chief of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) Office of the Whistleblower, made comments at a panel at the 2013 Compliance Week conference that echoed sentiments expressed by Katz, Marshall & Banks partners David J. Marshall and Debra S. Katz in a letter they wrote to the SEC in early May...

Internal Complaint Qualifies Under Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Protection, SDNY Rules

May 31, 2013
The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (“SDNY”) recently issued another pro-whistleblower decision, this time rejecting a motion to dismiss a whistleblower retaliation lawsuit brought under the Dodd-Frank Act in the case of Murray v. UBS Securities, LLC. In Murray, the SDNY agreed with the four...

Decline in FCPA Bribery Enforcement Appears Short-Lived

May 29, 2013
There was a significant decline in 2012 in enforcement actions under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”), legislation that outlaws bribery of foreign officials by U.S. companies or individuals. According to a study by TRACE International, Inc., an association that provides anti-bribery compliance solutions for...

SEC Whistleblowers' Rights Being Restricted in Severance Agreements

May 15, 2013
The ability of whistleblowers to provide information to the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) is being regularly impeded by employers in contractual negotiations, according to a letter that attorneys David Marshall and Debra Katz of the whistleblower law firm Katz, Marshall & Banks sent to...

SEC Official Discusses Progress of Whistleblower Program

May 6, 2013
Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) Associate Director of Enforcement Stephen Cohen addressed criticisms of the SEC whistleblower program at a panel discussion in New York on April 26, 2013, entitled “Enforcement 2013: Perspectives from Government Agencies.”  Much has been made in recent months of the fact that the 20-...

SEC Whistleblower Has Dodd-Frank Claim Dismissed but SOX Claim Survives

April 29, 2013
A federal district court recently dismissed a plaintiff’s claim of whistleblower retaliation under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 (“Dodd-Frank”) while allowing the plaintiff’s whistleblower retaliation claim under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (“SOX”) to continue. In Jones v. SouthPeak,...

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