No matter what your nationality or where you live, you may be eligible for the whistleblower protections and rewards offered by US whistleblower laws.
The US whistleblower lawyers at Phillips & Cohen work regularly with whistleblowers from around the world.
- Partner Erika Kelton landed what are likely the two largest SEC whistleblower awards issued to international whistleblowers: a $37 million reward in 2022 and a $32 million SEC whistleblower award.
- Another partner, Sean McKessy, is an experienced SEC whistleblower attorney as the first Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower Program. Not only did he start the program and help build it into what it is today, but Mr. McKessy also helped advise other governments about how to implement their own whistleblower programs.
Phillips & Cohen has offices in London, New York, Washington, DC, Miami and San Francisco that serve whistleblowers from around the world, including those aware of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations. If you think you have a potential claim, please contact us now for a free, confidential case review.
Whistleblowers from any country – Britain, Canada, India, China and elsewhere – can participate in any of the four US whistleblower reward programs. Usually, an international whistleblowers’ case will involve the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) whistleblower program or the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) whistleblower program, both created by the Dodd-Frank Act.
- You do not need to be a US resident or citizen to participate in the SEC or CFTC programs and receive rewards for information about matters where the US has jurisdiction.
- The SEC has made a strong effort to encourage international whistleblowers to come forward, and many have responded. UK whistleblowers and those in China, Canada, India and Australia have been the top sources of information provided to the SEC Whistleblower Office.
Learn more about the SEC whistleblower program and get answers to frequently asked questions in these languages: Français, Deutsch, Русский, Español, 中文, Português, 한국어.
Rewards and confidentiality for international whistleblowers
The SEC and CFTC will reward whistleblowers 10 percent to 30 percent of the amount that all government enforcement agencies recover, if the amount recovered based on a whistleblower’s information exceeds $1 million.
Both the SEC and CFTC promise confidentiality to whistleblowers. We understand that being an international whistleblower can pose particularly challenging issues. We are adept at dealing with whistleblowers’ concerns and strictly guard our clients’ identities and information.
We are available to answer any questions you have or to discuss your case. To get started, contact us for a free, confidential case review. We have offices in London; Washington, DC; Miami and San Francisco, and represent whistleblowers all over the world.
Phillips & Cohen has had the best success of any lawyers representing international whistleblowers. One of our clients received the largest SEC whistleblower reward ever paid to an international whistleblower – more than $32 million – for his assistance to the SEC and our work with enforcement officials to stop a massive securities fraud.
We also represented three other SEC whistleblowers who received SEC rewards, including one who received more than $3 million.
Phillips & Cohen’s US whistleblower lawyers have strong working relationships with SEC and CFTC enforcement officials. We also have experience working with officials in other countries on cross-jurisdictional matters. For instance, our attorneys have worked on many UK whistleblower matters where both UK regulators and US regulators are involved and have established close working relationships.
Whistleblower advocacy in Britain and elsewhere
Other countries have weak or no laws to protect or reward whistleblowers. Phillips & Cohen actively seeks ways to help those who want to report wrongdoing and blow the whistle in the UK and other countries in addition to the US.
In recognition of Phillips & Cohen’s success and experience, the UK Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards requested and quoted the written testimony of Phillips & Cohen partner Erika A. Kelton about the need for a UK law that rewards whistleblowers in a major report on ways Britain could improve corporate governance and the culture of the banking sector following the Libor scandal and other major problems with banks (Section 801).
Ms. Kelton also submitted comprehensive comments to the European Commission as part of its examination of the need for whistleblower protections in the European Union. The EU would benefit by creating whistleblower rewards programs modeled after the highly successful programs in the US, she argued.
Phillips & Cohen in the media around the world
Many well-respected international media outlets have published writings by Phillips & Cohen’s lawyers in support of whistleblowers. Some examples include:
- “UK needs to change its whistleblower culture and assist people brave enough to report wrongdoing,” by Erika Kelton, Belfast Telegraph
- “Sepp Blatter is wrong. Whistleblowers are courageous and deserve our support,” by Erika Kelton, The Guardian
- “Australia needs incentives for whistleblowers,” by Sean McKessy, Financial Review (Australia)
- “LuxLeaks highlights need for whistleblower protection and incentives,”Euractiv (Europe).
- “Opinion: Quebec’s AMF should offer rewards to whistleblowers,” by Stephen S. Hasegawa, Montreal Gazette.
- “Rewarding Whistleblowers,” The Economist.
- “UK clients can benefit from US whistleblower law,” by Erika Kelton, ela Briefing (UK Employment Lawyers Association).
- “CEOs would pay attention to bonus clawbacks,” The Financial Times.
- “Most whistleblowers have ‘clean hands,” The Financial Times.
In addition, journalists from around the world call Phillips & Cohen attorneys for insight on the SEC whistleblower program and other international whistleblower issues:
- “Why Whistleblowers Get Paid in the U.S. but Not in Britain,” Bloomberg.
- “How do you make millions by doing good? Become a whistleblower,” The Guardian (UK).
- “My legal life: Erika Kelton,” Law Society Gazette (UK).
- “Whistle-blowers Should Be Rewarded, Says US Lawyer” (“Delatores devem ser premiados, afirma norte-americana”), Folha De S. Paulo (Brazil).
- “These whistleblowers earn millions” (“Ces lanceurs d’alerte qui gagnet des millions”), Le Journal du Dimanche (France).
- “Who Would Be a Whistleblower?” The Independent (UK).
- “When reporting wrongdoing makes you rich” (“Wenn Verpfeifen reich macht”) Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (Germany).
For additional information about how the Dodd-Frank programs work, see our frequently asked questions page for international whistleblowers, and our pages about the Dodd-Frank whistleblower programs at the SEC and CFTC.