Health Net Inc. paid a $340,000 penalty Tuesday to the SEC for illegally using severance agreements that required outgoing employees to waive their ability to obtain monetary awards from the SEC’s whistleblower program.
Entries in retailiation (6)
David J. Marshall: SEC breaks new ground, bans employer-imposed waiver of right to whistleblower award
The Securities and Exchange Commission sent a strong message to employers nationwide last week when it issued a cease-and-desist order against a company that required departing employees, as a condition of receiving severance, to sign an agreement waiving their right to any award from the SEC Whistleblower Program for reporting securities law violations.
It's time for the compliance community to be hopeful. In the same month, the DOJ announced it was hiring a compliance expert to help make charging decisions, and an administrative law judge refused to allow the SEC to sanction a former Wells Fargo Advisors compliance officer because doing so would make her a scapegoat.
A federal district court ruled in May that whistleblowers don't have to report to the SEC to receive protection against retaliation by their employers.