Dealing with Whistleblowers: What Employers Need to Know in 2018 and Beyond
Whistleblowing in the workplace poses a host of issues for employers. Those who make a ‘qualifying and protected disclosure’ are legally protected from employer retaliation which arises from such disclosure. Managers and employers who violate this protection could be subject to claims that are uncapped in value. Furthermore, since claims are aired in a public forum, erring employers may incur reputational damage.
To protect themselves from potential legal actions, businesses must develop effective strategies in handling whistleblowing complaints. Employees should be encouraged to raise genuine concerns in good faith to promote transparency and open relationship in the workplace. This will also help employers to deal with wrongdoing internally and take appropriate action against those responsible for it as soon as possible.
In this LIVE Webcast, a panel of distinguished professionals and thought leaders brought together by The Knowledge Group will help employers and their counsel understand the important aspects of this significant topic. They will provide an in-depth discussion of the latest and significant whistleblowing issues. Speakers will also offer best practices in developing and implementing effective whistleblowing policies and procedures.
Key topics include:
- Recent Whistleblowing Developments
- Notable Case Laws
- Risks and Pitfalls for Employers
- Effective Whistleblowing Policies and Procedures
- Best Practices in Dealing with Whistleblowers
Deborah Meshulam, Partner
- Whistleblower activity in 2017: What do 2017 developments signal for 2018.
- Digital Realty Trust, Inc. v. Somers: How might the Supreme Court’s anticipated decision on the scope of whistleblower protections impact employers?
- The Regulatory Environment: Which Government Agencies are Active and How can Employers Protect Themselves.
- Key components of an effective whistleblower policy: dos and don’ts
Julia M. Jordan, Partner
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
- Rising tide of in-house counsel and compliance professionals as a whistleblower – citing trial of Bio-Rad General Counsel.
- Whether whistleblowers can take confidential information from employer
Lisa H. Cassilly, Partner
Alston & Bird LLP
- There are special considerations pertaining to the settlement of whistleblower claims, including limitations on the rights an employee can be asked to waive as part of a settlement.
- Several government agencies have indicated their disapproval of terms in contracts with employees which are deemed by the agencies to improperly interfere with reports of suspected violations of law to the government. One particularly notable example is the SEC’s Rule 21F-17(a) which has been the basis of a number of enforcement actions brought against employers on grounds that the employers included impermissible language in settlement agreements with their employees.
- Prudent employers need to be aware of the limits of what claims or rights can be effectively waived by way of a settlement agreement, and terms such as confidentiality provisions in settlement agreements which are increasingly scrutinized by government agencies.
Deborah Meshulam has more than two decades of securities enforcement defense experience trying the full range of cases arising from allegations of securities law violations and related breaches of fiduciary duty.
Deborah represents clients in SEC and Department of Justice (DOJ) investigations, securities class actions and derivative lawsuits relating to claims of securities law and FCPA violations and accounting issues. She counsels clients on compliance, regulatory and corporate governance matters, including issues relating to the Dodd Frank whistle blower program. She also represents clients in Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) investigations, FINRA and Exchange proceedings and in Exchange delisting hearings.
Deborah Meshulam has more than two decades of securities enforcement defense experience trying the full range of cases arising from …
Julia Jordan is a partner in Sullivan & Cromwell LLP’s Litigation Group. Ms. Jordan has a broad litigation practice that includes whistleblower litigation and workplace investigations, labor and employment, complex civil litigation and regulatory enforcement matters. She has represented prominent corporations and financial institutions in a wide variety of business litigation in state and federal courts throughout the country.
Ms. Jordan serves as co-head of S&C’s Labor and Employment Group and as co-head of the Whistleblower Litigation and Workplace Investigations Group and is a member of the Women’s Initiative
Committee and the Pro Bono Committee. She also serves as co-hiring partner for the firm’s Washington, D.C. office.
Prior to joining S&C, Ms. Jordan served as an assistant district attorney in the New York County District Attorney’s Office, where she prosecuted a wide variety of cases and tried numerous jury and bench trials.
Julia Jordan is a partner in Sullivan & Cromwell LLP’s Litigation Group. Ms. Jordan has a broad litigation practice that …
Lisa Cassilly concentrates on the representation of management interests with a special emphasis on litigated matters. She has defended against all types of employment claims in administrative proceedings, arbitrations and in trial and appellate courts throughout the country. Lisa has extensive experience conducting internal investigations and audits, handling SOX and other whistleblower claims and prosecuting and defending actions involving claims for breach of restrictive covenants, employee piracy, breach of fiduciary duties and trade secret misappropriation.
Lisa is the immediate past leader of the Labor & Employment Group at Alston & Bird and has been repeatedly recognized as a leading employment lawyer by The Best Lawyers in America® and Chambers USA, which reports that, “she is one of the top performers in her field" whose clients describe her as “brilliant, strategic and extremely effective.”
Lisa Cassilly concentrates on the representation of management interests with a special emphasis on litigated matters. She has defended against …
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Method Of Presentation:
Experience in employment law
NY Category of CLE Credit:
Areas of Professional Practice
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About DLA Piper
DLA Piper is a global law firm with lawyers worldwide. It provides its clients with legal and business solutions locally, regionally and internationally using integrated teams of lawyers with experience that spans a broad range of disciplines. DLA Piper is widely recognized for its pioneering approach and extensive geographic reach, which enables the practice to look after the business issues that matter to its clients - whether they are large or small. Clients of DLA Piper include single-owner startups, local and household name companies, multinationals, financial institutions, FTSE and Fortune 500 enterprises and their subsidiaries, public bodies and governments.
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