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Two Courts—Two Decisions on Whistleblower Protections

Tom Fox | December 21, 2015

Recently a second U.S. Court of Appeals looked at the question of whether a whistleblower who reports concerns internally to a company rather than going to the SEC directly, can claim protections under the Whistleblower Protections under the Dodd-Frank Act. In the case of Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy LLC, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals found that employees who reported suspected illegal conduct to their employers rather than to the SEC are entitled to the anti-retaliation protections afforded under Dodd-Frank.

The court properly recognized that almost all whistleblowers report internally and not to afford them anti-retaliatory protections would undermine the goal of both Dodd-Frank and the SEC’s interpretation of the statute to encourage the reporting of illegal conduct. Moreover, the court noted there were a group of potential whistleblowers, including attorneys and auditors, who cannot ethically report the SEC without prior internal...

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