Former SEC Prosecutor
and Wall Street Defense Counsel
Created as part of a financial reform bill, the SEC whistleblower program is intended to help detect and stop violations of securities law. It provides financial incentives for people with non-public information about those violations to report it to the Securities and Exchange Commission. If that information leads to an SEC action with a financial penalty of more than $1 million, the whistleblower can claim a percentage of the penalty as a monetary award.
This program provides an opportunity to reap a reward while also doing a public service. But to give yourself the best chance of collecting a large award, you should have an experienced SEC whistleblower attorney by your side. An attorney can make sure you follow all the rules required by the program; present your information in the best possible light; and keep you as anonymous as possible.
Our south Florida headquarters makes us uniquely situated to assist in matters impacting the southeast United States and Latin America. Our attorneys have worked in the Miami office of the SEC and routinely cooperate with lawyers in the SEC’s Miami office.Confidential Cooperation
Recognizing that whistleblowers may face career consequences from coming forward, the SEC whistleblower program promises confidentiality to every whistleblower. The Commission will not reveal whistleblowers’ identities except in two situations. One of these is when it passes the case to another government agency, such as prosecutors in a U.S. Attorney’s office. In that case, the new agency is still bound by confidentiality requirements. The other time the SEC will disclose your identity is when a court orders it.
Whistleblowers who need more protection than that can also submit their information anonymously, without providing any name or contact information. However, if they want to be eligible for a financial award, they must have an SEC whistleblower attorney to act as a go-between. That’s because they’ll need to stay in touch with the SEC to help them build the case. This kind of cooperation counts in the whistleblower’s favor when the SEC is deciding how large the award should be. Later on, an attorney can help whistleblowers apply for the award, which is governed by strict rules.
If whistleblowers’ information leads to a successful case against the wrongdoer, they can be awarded 10% to 30% of the total financial penalty. That includes regulatory actions or civil fines from the SEC as well as any fines or penalties in related cases. The SEC takes your cooperation, any underlying wrongdoing, and the value of the information into account when it calculates this award. There are things you and your attorney can do to increase your chances.Talk to an Experienced Attorney
If you’ve got information about a serious violation of securities law, don’t hesitate to reach out to Silver Law and the Law Firm of David R. Chase. Both David Chase and Scott Silver are career-long securities lawyers with substantial experience in SEC actions. Scott Silver was an early adopter of the SEC whistleblower program, writing a well-regarded outline that he continues to offer free of charge. David Chase is a former SEC enforcement attorney in the SEC’s Miami office, so he has firsthand knowledge of how the SEC builds and proves its cases.
Best of all, we offer free consultations, so we can hear about your case and give you our best legal analysis of how it might come out in the real world. If you’d like to set up one of these meetings, call us at 800.975.4345 or send us a message through our website.