Image of Are disclosures about bank fraud protected under the Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower law?

Are disclosures about bank fraud protected under the Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower law?

SOX Whistleblower Law Protects Disclosures About Bank Fraud

Yes, a disclosure about bank fraud is protected conduct (protected whistleblowing) under the whistleblower protection provision of the Sarbanes-Oxlet Act.

The elements of bank fraud under 18 U.S.C. § 1344(1) are:

  1. that the defendant knowingly executed or attempted to execute a scheme to defraud a financial institution;
  2. that the defendant did so with the intent to defraud; and
  3. that the financial institution was insured by the FDIC.

The intent to defraud may be established by circumstantial evidence.

Examples of SOX case cases entailing disclosures of bank fraud include:

  • Guitron v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.. No. C 10-3461 CW, 2012 WL 2708517 (N.D. Cal. July 6, 2012), where the court held that disclosures about bankers allegedly opening and closing accounts “without the customer’s permission or knowledge” and misleading customers about the terms of accounts were protected under SOX.
  • Erhart v. BofI Holding, Inc.,No. 15-cv-02287 (S.D. Cal. Sept. 11, 2017), where the court held that plaintiff’s disclosures about the CEO depositing third-party checks for structured settlement annuity payments into a personal account, including nearly $100,000 in checks made payable to third parties, were protected under Section 806 of SOX.

Whistleblower Protections for Banking/Financial Services Whistleblowers

SOX Whistleblower Lawyers’ Guide to SOX Whistleblower Protection Law

For more information about the SOX whistleblower law, download our free guide to Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Protection

Whistleblower Lawyers Representing Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Whistleblowers

We have assembled a team of leading whistleblower lawyers to provide top-notch representation to Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) whistleblowers.  Recently Washingtonian magazine named two of our attorneys top whistleblower lawyers. U.S. News and Best Lawyers® have named Zuckerman Law a Tier 1 Law Firm in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area.

The whistleblower lawyers at Zuckerman Law have substantial experience litigating Sarbanes Oxley whistleblower retaliation claims and have achieved substantial recoveries for officers, executives, accountants, auditors, and other senior professionals.  To schedule a free preliminary consultation, click here or call us at 202-262-8959.

  • Matt Stock is a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Fraud Examiner and former KPMG external auditor.  As an auditor, Mr. Stock developed an expertise in financial statement analysis, internal controls testing and fraud recognition, and he uses his auditing experience to help whistleblowers investigate and disclose complex financial frauds to the government and obtain damages for retaliation.  He is lead author of SEC Whistleblower Program: Tips from SEC Whistleblower Attorneys to Maximize an SEC Whistleblower Award.
  • Both Bachman and Zuckerman served in senior positions at the Office of Special Counsel, where they oversaw investigations of whistleblower retaliation claims and whistleblower disclosures, and enforced the Whistleblower Protection Act.
  • Eric Bachman has substantial experience litigating precedent-setting employment cases.  His wins include a $100 million settlement in a disparate impact Title VII class action and a $16 million class action settlement against a major grocery chain.  Having served as Special Litigation Counsel in the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice and as lead or co-counsel in numerous jury trials, Bachman is ready to go the distance to obtain the relief that you deserve.
  • Bachman and Zuckerman served on the Department of Labor’s Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee, which makes recommendations to the Secretary of Labor to improve OSHA’s administration of federal whistleblower protections.
  • Jason Zuckerman was recognized by Washingtonian magazine as a “Top Whistleblower Lawyer” in 2017, 2015, 2009, and 2007, selected by his peers to be included in The Best Lawyers in America® in the category of employment law (2011-2017), and selected by his peers to be listed in SuperLawyers(2012 and 2015-2017) in the category of labor and employment law.  Zuckerman is rated 10 out of 10 by Avvo, based largely on client reviews, and rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbellbased on peer reviews.
  • The firm has published extensively on whistleblower rights and protections, and regularly speaks nationwide at seminars and continuing legal education conferences.  We blog about new developments in whistleblower law at the Whistleblower Protection Blog.

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.