Approximately $1.1 billion Awarded To 224 Individuals Since SEC Issued Its First Whistleblower Award in 2012
On October 29, 2021, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced an award of more than $2 million to a whistleblower who provided information that led to a successful related action by the U.S. Department of Justice.
The whistleblower previously received an award for contributions to an SEC enforcement action based on the same information that supported the award for the related action, and was eligible for the award announced today due to recent amendments clarifying the types of actions that may be considered “related” under the whistleblower rules. The whistleblower’s information prompted the opening of investigations by both the SEC and the DOJ. The whistleblower also provided extensive, ongoing assistance to both investigations.
“The SEC’s whistleblower rule amendments make clear that non-prosecution and deferred prosecution agreements entered into by the DOJ are related actions upon which whistleblowers may receive awards,” said Emily Pasquinelli, Acting Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower.
All payments are made out of an investor protection fund established by Congress that is financed entirely through monetary sanctions paid to the SEC by securities law violators. No money has been taken or withheld from harmed investors to pay whistleblower awards. Whistleblowers may be eligible for an award when they voluntarily provide the SEC with original, timely, and credible information that leads to a successful enforcement action. Whistleblower awards can range from 10-30% of the money collected when the monetary sanctions exceed $1 million.
As set forth in the Dodd-Frank Act, the SEC protects the confidentiality of whistleblowers and does not disclose any information that could reveal a whistleblower’s identity.
Do You Qualify As An SEC Whistleblower?
If you voluntarily provide original, high-quality information (i.e., information derived from your independent knowledge, NOT facts derived from publicly-available information) about the possible violation of the federal securities laws that has occurred, is ongoing or is about to occur AND which leads to a successful SEC enforcement action, resulting in an order of monetary sanctions exceeding $1 million, then you MAY be eligible for an SEC whistleblower award of between 10% and 30% of the monetary sanctions collected in actions brought by the SEC and related actions brought by certain other regulatory and law enforcement authorities.
Remember, information is voluntarily provided if you provide information to the SEC or another regulatory or law enforcement authority before a) the SEC requests it from you or your lawyer or b) Congress, another regulatory or enforcement agency or self-regulatory organization asks you to provide the information in connection with an investigation or certain examinations or inspections.
Can You Submit Information Anonymously To The SEC?
Yes, but if you wish to submit information to the SEC anonymously, you MUST be represented by an attorney in connection with the anonymous information submission to be eligible for an award.
Kehoe Law Firm’s legal team understands the issues associated with making the difficult decision to voluntarily come forward with information about securities fraud or other wrongdoing. Moreover, the Firm’s legal staff has extensive experience investigating and prosecuting fraud, as well as interacting with sources of information, especially brave, honest individuals who are willing to expose fraud committed against the United States government.
If you have questions or concerns about voluntarily providing information as a whistleblower to the SEC about violations of the federal securities laws, including questions about whistleblower award eligibility or the form and manner in which the information is required to be provided to the SEC, please contact Kehoe Law Firm, P.C., [email protected], [email protected]. If you prefer to speak privately with an attorney, please contact either Michael Yarnoff, Esq., [email protected], (215) 792-6676, Ext. 804, or John Kehoe, Esq., [email protected], (215) 792-6676, Ext. 801.