Walter Jospin & Michael Sullivan Speak in Sao Paolo, Brazil on the “Practical Aspects of Representing SEC Whistleblowers”

On December 11, 2019, Finch McCranie’s Walter Jospin and Michael Sullivan joined Brazilian anti-corruption and compliance lawyers for a panel discussion to explain the SEC Whistleblower Program and the practical ways to represent whistleblowers effectively before the SEC.

Arranged at the invitation of the Brazilian Business Law Institute’s Anti-Corruption and Compliance Commission, the panel was moderated by Adriana Dantas, Member of the Petrobras Independent Board Committee on Sanctions and Disciplinary Measures and founding partner of Adriana Dantas Advogados. Joining them on the panel were Bruno Maeda and Carlos Ayres of Sao Paolo’s Maeda, Syres & Sarubbi Advogados, and Giovanni Falcetta of Sao Paolo’s TozziniFreire Advogados.

Panel Discussion

Mr. Sullivan explained the history of whistleblower rewards in the United States beginning with the False Claims Act’s 1986 amendments, which provided for meaningful rewards to whistleblowers for exposing fraud and false claims to the U.S. government. The successes of the False Claims Act in recovering billions for the federal government and deterring fraud led to adoption of the first significant IRS Whistleblower Program in 2006. Then, in response to the 2008 financial crisis, Congress established the SEC Whistleblower Program and CFTC Whistleblower Program in the Dodd-Frank law enacted in 2010. The US Senate Banking Committee staff contacted and consulted with Mr. Sullivan on changes to the Dodd-Frank bill to make the SEC and CFTC Whistleblower Programs effective.

Mr. Jospin, former Director of the SEC’s Atlanta Regional Office, then explained how the SEC works from an insider’s perspective. He also discussed best practices in handling a successful SEC whistleblower claim, including the importance of placing the claim in the most appropriate SEC office. The panel then had a lively discussion of a broad range of issues that arise in representing whistleblowers, as well as Brazilian initiatives to consider whistleblower legislation. The event was hosted by the law firm Machado Meyer in Sao Paolo.

Mr. Jospin and Mr. Sullivan promised our Brazilian colleagues links to the SEC law and rules—here they are:

SEC Whistleblower Statute:

SEC Rules for Whistleblower Claims:

Proposed amendments to SEC Rules for Whistleblower Claims:

CFTC Whistleblower Statute:

CFTC Rules for Whistleblower Claims:

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