For corporate executives who become aware of fraud or securities violations in their company, there is a genuine fear of retaliation. The potential effects on your reputation in your field could become compromised.
Luckily, there is a strong legal framework to protect corporate executives from such abuses and to encourage them to keep their companies honest.
Understanding corporate fraud laws
The laws that form the backbone for corporate whistleblower protections include the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, the Dodd-Frank Act, the False Claims Act, and those whistleblower protections under the 2013 Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). In addition to legal protections, corporate executives may be eligible for awards via the SEC’s whistleblower reward program. Here are some of the incentives for corporate whistleblowers:
- A monetary award can be between 10% and 30% of the total amount collected in sanctions.
- The SEC has awarded over $300 million to whistleblowers since the program started in 2011.
- Some of the highest whistleblower awards have been issued in the past three years.
Protecting your career and reputation
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act, signed into law in 2002, creates a legal framework for increased criminal punishments for federal securities fraud as well as updated penalties for evidence destruction as they relate to federal investigations. While the Act makes it illegal for U.S. companies to retaliate against employees that aid federal or Congressional investigations into U.S. securities law violations and antifraud law violations, retaliation still does occur.
Don’t let your company’s actions jeopardize your future. Contact an attorney experienced in whistleblower and retaliation claims.