It's All in the Footnotes: A Field Guide to SEC Whistleblower Award

American Bar Association Business Law Today
26 minute read | May.15.2018

More than seven years since the Dodd-Frank Act's whistleblower incentive provisions became effective, and more than five years since the first SEC whistleblower program award, only a few courts have put the program under a microscope. In the absence of meaningful case law and in light of the SEC's practice to heavily redact orders granting and denying awards, how do we know what makes the program really tick? The short answer: it's all in the footnotes.

In this first-of-a-kind article, we tie together more than 350 footnotes in 120 SEC whistleblower orders so that you can get easy answers to four key questions: Who qualifies for SEC whistleblower awards? What procedural rights and responsibilities do they have? When does the SEC make exceptions? And how does the SEC calculate and allocate awards?