SEC Handing Out $54 Million Awards to 2 Whistleblowers.
The Securities and Exchange Commission said Thursday it issued two whistleblower awards, handing $39 million to one tipster and $15 million to another. For both recipients, that apparently wasn’t enough.
Both tipsters filed for additional, related rewards involving claims made to other federal agencies; those were denied, according to the SEC.
In one of those denials, the agency said allowing whistleblowers to recover funds both under its program and a separate program for the same action “would produce the irrational result of encouraging multiple ‘bites of the apple’ in adjudicating claims for the same action.”
A third claimant’s award was denied by the SEC, the agency said, because the person’s information wasn’t used in the case.
The SEC declined to disclose the identities of the whistleblowers, citing federal law.
As of Thursday, the SEC has paid at least $320 million to 57 tipsters since launching the program in 2011 as part of the Dodd-Frank Act. The SEC said the $39 million award was its second-largest issued in the program’s history.
Whistleblowers who submit original information can collect 10% to 30% of a penalty, if that penalty totals more than $1 million.
In June, however, the SEC voted to propose potential cuts to the bounties whistleblowers can collect under the program. The proposal, which is subject to public comment, would give the SEC the discretion to limit awards in the biggest cases.
By Samuel Rubenfeld