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Why does the Dodd-Frank Act protect whistleblowers?

Like Sarbanes-Oxley, DFA was passed in the wake of a financial scandal—the subprime mortgage bubble and subsequent market collapse of 2008. See Samuel C. Leifer, Note, Protecting Whistleblower Protections in the Dodd-Frank Act, 113 MICH. L. REV. 121, 129-30 (2014) (discussing the mortgage crisis and Congress’s response).

In enacting DFA, Congress sought to “promote the financial stability of the United States by improving accountability and transparency in the financial system” and “protect consumers from abusive financial services practices.” Pub. L. No. 111-203, 124 Stat. 1376, 1376 (2010).

Congress recognized the risks that corporate whistleblowers take when they come forward and therefore offered both incentives and protections for whistleblowers.  See 156 Cong. Reg. S5929 (daily ed. July 15, 2010) (statement of Sen. Dodd) (“The Congress intends that the SEC make awards that are sufficiently robust to motivate potential whistleblowers to share their information and to overcome the fear of the loss of their positions. Unless the whistleblowers come forward, the Federal Government will not know about the frauds and misconduct.”).

Click here to learn more about anti-retaliation protections for SEC whistleblowers under the Dodd-Frank Act and Sarbanes-Oxley Act and see our articleDodd-Frank Whistleblower Protection Post-Digital Realty.

Dodd-Frank whistleblower law

Jason Zuckerman, Principal of Zuckerman Law, litigates whistleblower retaliation, qui tam, wrongful discharge, and other employment-related claims. He is rated 10 out of 10 by Avvo, was recognized by Washingtonian magazine as a “Top Whistleblower Lawyer” in 2015 and selected by his peers to be included in The Best Lawyers in America® and in SuperLawyers.