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Can An Individual Qualify As Whistleblower Without Reporting To TheSEC?

In a pending amicus brief the SEC argues that an individual can more easily qualify as a whistleblower.

SEC Claims "Whistleblowers" Don't Have to Report to SEC

March 3 2014. By 

Day Pitney LLP on lexology.com.

amicus brief in Meng-Lin Liu v. Siemens AG, which is currently before the Second Circuit, arguing that an individual can qualify as a "whistleblower" for purposes of the Dodd-Frank anti-retaliation provisions even if the individual did not report to the SEC. Rather, the SEC argues, consistent with its clarifying rule, the anti-retaliation protections extend to anyone who engages in the whistleblowing activities described in Section 21F(h)(1)(A) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 irrespective of whether the individual makes a separate report to the SEC. According to the SEC, this reading will "maintain incentives for individuals to first report internally in appropriate circumstances." In Liu, Meng-Lin Liu alleged that Siemens had retaliated against him after he internally reported alleged corrupt practices by the company. The district court dismissed Liu's case on the grounds that the anti-retaliation provisions do not extend to Liu as an overseas whistleblower. The district court discussed but did not reach Siemens' argument that because Liu did not report to the SEC, he did not qualify as a whistleblower under the anti-retaliation provisions.

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