Whistleblower Retaliation – Corporate Fraud by Publicly Traded Corporations-Sarbanes Oxley Act

Employees of publically traded corporations who report illegal activities are considered whistleblowers under the Sarbanes Oxley Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1514A (“SOX”), which protects employees who disclose corporate fraud. Whistleblowers are protected when employers retaliate against the employee who has reported corporate fraud.

An employee engages in protected conduct by providing information which the employee reasonably believes is a violation of federal mail, wire, and bank, or securities fraud; federal law relating to fraud against shareholders; or any rule or regulation of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Examples of protected conduct include reporting the employer’s failure to disclose accurate financial statements and reporting improper entries on financial statements.

Under the Sarbanes-Oxley law, the whistleblower employee must prove the employee engaged in protected conduct; the employer had knowledge of the protected conduct; the employer took an adverse employment action and the protected conduct was a contributing factor in the employer’s decision to take the adverse action. Adverse actions which constitute retaliation include the termination of employment, demotion, threats, harassment, failure to hire or promote, or any discriminatory action that negatively impacts the terms and conditions of a whistleblower’s employment.

A successful Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower can recover damages including reinstatement, back pay for lost wages, front pay for future lost wages, compensatory damages, costs and attorneys’ fees. A Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower who is retaliated against must file a complaint with the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration Department (OSHA) within 180 days of the retaliatory action.

We represent whistleblower employees of publically traded corporations who report illegal activities and are retaliated against by their employers. Call Abramson Employment Law at 267-470-4742 or contact us online to discuss your legal options.

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