To date, the Securities and Exchange Commission has granted more than $110 million in awards to whistleblowers in dozens of cases and has taken in more the $500 million in related fines.
A US-based whistleblower law firm has partnered with two European companies to launch a collaborative platform to help Europeans expose financial wrongdoing and exploit US laws.
Meissner & Associates, a New York-based firm that represents whistleblowers and securities professionals, has joined forces with Stuttgart-and Berlin-based Naegele and London-based Brahams Dutt Badrick French to create a new transatlantic whistleblower intiative, the first of its kind, according to Meissner & Associates.
The three-way alliance aims to help employees, suppliers and other stakeholders of international companies who identify financial misconduct in European operations to bring lawsuits and advance enforcement actions by the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Eligible clients include anyone working with a European or multinational business whose securities trade on US exchanges, as well as American companies that trade in Europe.
Under the 2010 Dodd-Frank legislation, individuals whose original information assists US financial watchdogs in bringing a successful enforcement proceeding are entitled to a bounty payment as high as 30 per cent of any penalty exceeding $1 million imposed on a company.
Although certain regulatory aspects of the Dodd-Frank act could be rolled back once President-elect Trump enters into power next month, whistleblower commission provisions are expected to remain in place as a tool for encouraging those with inside information to step forward and work with regulators to curtail wrongdoing.
Under the new alliance, Naegle and BDBF will advise clients on local legal issues stemming from their role as whistleblowers, including helping with challenges that may arise from their employers such as retaliatory action. Stuart Meissner, a former securities regulator and prosecutor who is heading the collaboration, will help clients navigate the arduous process of filing and pursuing cases with the SEC.
“We’re excited to align with two leading European employment law firms in Naegele and BDBF to provide a legal support system for individuals in Europe who may want to come forward as whistleblowers but up to now have not had the confidence that their voices would be heard and actions taken to protect them,” Mr Meissner said.