Among the many reforms enacted in the Dodd-Frank Act, Congress opened the door to myriad claims by "whistleblowers." They can receive substantial "bounties" (no less than 10% and as much as 30% of what the SEC and other agencies actually collect in enforcement actions where more than $1 million is recovered), for informing the SEC about alleged violations of the securities laws, including corporate wrongdoing. Dodd-Frank also strengthened the remedies available to a whistleblower who contends that there was retaliation by his employer.
Important to note — whistleblowing covers a wide range of potential claims. While much of the press commentary on whistleblowing has focused on reporting wrongdoing by public companies and how that impacts corporate compliance policies, whistleblowing issues can arise out of any violation of the securities laws. The potential for a report to the SEC extends to non-public companies as well as securities professionals.
Schiff Hardin can provide multi-disciplinary assistance to any company or person whose conduct is in any way covered by the federal securities laws and who may be the target of a Dodd-Frank Act whistleblower claim. These include our White Collar Crime and Corporate Compliance, Securities and Futures Regulation, Securities Litigation, Corporate and Securities, Public Companies and Labor and Employment groups.
Our assistance includes:
- Education — Our lawyers regularly publish on the Dodd-Frank Act. We also can provide in-house training/briefing programs on the requirements of the Act.
- Prevention — Our Corporate Compliance services assist clients in managing risks by preventing and discovering misconduct before it is reported to the SEC, formulating an appropriate internal remedial action to best position our clients to address potential Dodd-Frank Act whistleblower claims. These services include preparing compliance policies and programs and conducting internal investigations.
- Counseling — Our Corporate Compliance services also assist clients in protecting the client from a claim of retaliation against a whistleblower.
- Litigation — When litigation becomes the only option, Schiff Hardin's vast, multi-disciplinary experience and depth is available to vigorously defend against SEC enforcement actions and any underlying whistleblower claims.