House GOP Taking Aim at SEC Whistleblower Program

Law360
February 10, 2017

Jordan A. Thomas weighs in on potential policy changes to the SEC Whistleblower Program

While the new administration is finishing up its cabinet appointees in Washington, House Republicans are preparing to make altercations to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s policies. These changes include a provision that could limit the agency’s whistleblower program. The significant change in question is a provision that would prohibit “co-conspirators” from receiving an award from the SEC’s whistleblower program for successful tips.

Partner and Whistleblower Chair Jordan A. Thomas told Law360 that the effects of the prohibition will likely be muted, explaining the “vast majority” of whistleblowers don’t appear to have any responsibility in the schemes they report, but agreed it could undermine the program. “Although the number’s small, the whistleblowers who come forward who have some culpability can be quite valuable to law enforcement authorities,” Thomas said. “It would be unfortunate if these individuals were discouraged from coming forward,” he added.