Potential whistleblowers are often hesitant to come forward and report the information they have because they have a very real fear of being retaliated against. It is not uncommon for individuals and companies that are under investigation for securities fraud to go to great lengths to silence those who are helping the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) make their case.
While the retaliation fears are real, there are steps you can take to protect yourself from retaliation and still report your information to the SEC. Remaining an anonymous whistleblower could be the best way to protect your identity and still do your part to hold the fraudulent parties accountable for their misconduct. Read on to learn more about what an SEC whistleblower lawyer can do to help.
There are several laws in effect, including the Dodd-Frank Act and Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX), that are designed to protect whistleblowers. But there is no law that expressly protects a whistleblower’s identity from becoming known if they want to remain anonymous.
Remaining anonymous throughout the whistleblowing process is essential if you hope to avoid being retaliated against for coming forward with your tip. The SEC only allows would-be whistleblowers to report their tips anonymously as long as they are being represented by an attorney.
If your identity does become known after reporting your information to the SEC, the Dodd-Frank and SOX Acts provide you with opportunities to hold those who retaliated against you accountable.
The SEC can impose their own sanctions for retaliation, and your lawyer can help you pursue a civil claim, seeking double back pay, restitution for reputational damage, and other losses you endured as a result of the retaliatory action.
Before you report your tip, you’ll need to retain legal representation if you hope to remain anonymous. From there, your lawyer can act on your behalf when reporting your tip to the SEC. Your whistleblower lawyer will be responsible for all communications between you (the whistleblower) and the SEC should they need to be in touch with questions over the course of their investigation.
It should be noted if you are entitled to a whistleblower award for your efforts in coming forward, the SEC will need to learn your identity in order to issue your payment. However, only the necessary parties will learn who you are and your name will not be released to the public.
If you have additional questions about how anonymity works in whistleblowing or want to know more about how to fight back after being retaliated against for blowing the whistle, you can discuss your concerns with your whistleblower lawyer.
No one said doing the right thing was going to be easy. But the law is on your side and can protect your identity from becoming known when you have legal representation. You need a top SEC whistleblower lawyer at Meissner Associates to represent your best interests.
Call our office at 1-866-764-3100 or complete the secured contact form included at the bottom of this page to schedule your confidential tip evaluation.