Interview on the SEC Whistleblower Program: Rising Claims in 2019?

In this audio post, Justin Kudler interviews Thomas Sporkin about the SEC Whistleblower Program and potential rising claims resulting from this area. Tom is a partner at Buckley LLP in Washington, DC.  Before joining Buckley, Tom held several positions at the SEC, including serving as Chief of the Office of Market Intelligence, where he oversaw the formation of the Whistleblower Program.

As Justin introduces in the interview, the SEC’s Whistleblower Program hopes to find people who know of possible securities law violations, and is authorized to reward those people with monetary awards.  The program recently published its annual report to Congress for Fiscal Year 2018, and it contains some interesting information. For example, the SEC has awarded over $326 million to 59 whistleblowers since the beginning of the program approximately 7 years ago, and it awarded more than $168 million to 13 individuals in Fiscal Year 2018.  With these types of numbers, it is fair to speculate that claims in this area could be rising.

Listen to the interview in full below, and read the full SEC Whistleblower Report to Congress here. Thank you to both Justin and Tom for their time and expertise.

justin.headshotJustin Kudler is Assistant Vice President, Claims at AXA XL in Hartford, where he handles professional liability claims under directors and officers, errors and omissions, and other insurance policies issued to financial institutions and publicly traded companies.  Before joining AXA XL in 2006, Justin defended individuals in Securities and Exchange Commission investigations, as well as litigated complex insurance matters and securities and consumer class actions, at a major Boston law firm.  He also has represented plaintiffs in federal securities class actions.  Justin recently co-authored an article for the Third Quarter 2018 edition of the PLUS Journal on federal judicial vacancies, and he regularly speaks at industry conferences and writes articles on insurance, claims, securities, and class action issues.

Sporkin_Thomas_bioTom Sporkin is a partner at Buckley LLP where he represents individuals and entities in matters before the Securities and Exchange Commission.  Prior to joining Buckley Firm, Tom spent 20 years with the Division of Enforcement of the SEC, where he was one of the leaders who oversaw its Dodd-Frank whistleblower rule-writing and subsequent launch of its Office of the Whistleblower. Tom was also Chief of the Office of Market Intelligence, where he had primary responsibility for vetting all whistleblower tips and other intelligence received by the SEC, and oversaw a multidisciplinary staff of more than 50 senior enforcement attorneys, accountants, market-surveillance specialists, and analysts tasked with investigating potential violations of the federal securities laws. Today, Tom specializes in representing executives who report matters to the SEC pursuant to the whistleblower rules, and helps companies deal with sensitive whistleblower issues.

Trends in Whistleblower Litigation

From the 2015 PLUS Conference session “Unfinished Laws? An Update on Dodd-Frank, The JOBS Act, Etc.,” panelist Sharie Brown, Esq. (Troutman Sanders LLP) discusses trends in whistleblower litigation.

If D&O insurance issues are important to you then don’t miss the industry event of the year – the 2016 PLUS D&O Symposium, February 3 and 4 in New York.

PLUS members can view this entire Conference session in the PLUS Multimedia Library