Whistleblower attorneys comment on new SEC whistleblower rules

WASHINGTON, DC, May 25, 2011 -- Below are statements from Erika A. Kelton partners with Phillips & Cohen LLP, regarding the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission vote today on final rules for the whistleblower reward program created by the Dodd-Frank law.

Phillips & Cohen has specialized in representing only whistleblowers for more than two decades. Cases brought by the firm on behalf of whistleblowers have returned more than $7 billion to governments in civil settlements and related criminal fines, making it the most successful law firm representing whistleblowers in the nation.

Erika A. Kelton, a Washington, DC, attorney with Phillips & Cohen LLP:
"The SEC came under intense pressure from the Chamber of Commerce and other corporate interests to weaken the rules in a way that would have discouraged most whistleblowers from coming forward," said Erika A. Kelton, a Washington, DC, attorney with Phillips & Cohen LLP. "By establishing incentives for people to report fraud concerns internally before going to the SEC -- but not making such reporting mandatory -- the SEC has struck a balance that still will encourage whistleblowers."

"We have represented whistleblowers for more than two decades, and in almost all cases, employees have reported their concerns about misconduct and fraud to managers and supervisors first," Kelton said. "It has only been after they have been retaliated against for doing so that they have come to us."

"It is also a positive step that the rules allow audit and compliance personnel to go directly to the SEC if companies fail to act on their recommendations,"..