Practice Areas

Securities and Exchange Commission Whistleblower Program

Securities fraud—also known as stock or investment fraud—deceives the public and can wipe out the life’s savings of unsuspecting individuals and organizations. On May 25, 2011, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission officially adopted new rules that provide incentives as well as protection for whistleblowers who report violations of securities laws. A person who supplies original information that leads to a successful enforcement by the SEC can receive between 10-30 percent of monetary sanctions if exceeding $1 million.

However, the SEC has limited resources and can only pursue claims that are both clearly reasoned and actionable. In order to properly present a claim to the SEC, a whistleblower needs to know that the firm they retain understands securities law.

Hagens Berman, a whistleblower law firm, represents individuals who alert the government to fraudulent securities activities, and has taken on large corporations on behalf of investors, alleging false or misleading public statements and other securities violations.

For instance, the firm earned a $92.5 million settlement for investors after Boeing allegedly concealed production problems with the 777 airliner until a pending merger with McDonnell Douglas had been completed.

If you have inside knowledge of illegal activities in any of the following areas you may qualify for a reward:

  • Illegal insider trading, in which trades are made based on information not disclosed to the public and acquired from a company insider or related party
  • Ponzi schemes, in which investors are paid with their own funds or those of other investors, instead of with profits from their investments
  • Front running, in which a trader is aware of pending customer orders for a security and buys or sells from his own account first to unfairly make a profit
  • Accounting fraud, in which accountants fail to identify false information made by clients regarding their financial status

If you believe you may have information in one of these areas, or know of other possible violations, you can contact an attorney by calling (206) 623-7292. You can also submit information confidentially by clicking here.