Guide to Whistleblowing

Contributing Editors

In this new age of accountability, organisations around the globe are having to navigate a patchwork of new laws designed to protect those who expose corporate misconduct. IEL’s Guide to Whistleblowing examines what constitutes a protective disclosure, the scope of regulations across 21 countries, and the steps businesses must take to ensure compliance with them.

Learn more about the response taken in specific countries or build your own report to compare approaches taken around the world.

Choose countries

 

Choose questions

Choose the questions you would like answering, or choose all for the full picture.

05. Are the employee representative bodies involved in the implementation of this system? 

05. Are the employee representative bodies involved in the implementation of this system? 

Flag / Icon

Australia

  • at Lander & Rogers

Strictly speaking, no. ASIC Regulatory Guide 270 does not refer to employee representative bodies needing to be involved in the implementation of whistleblower policies.

Last updated on 23/08/2022

Flag / Icon

Belgium

  • at Van Olmen & Wynant

There has to be a consultation of the social partners for the establishment of an internal reporting procedure. This means that the employer will have to consult the works council. If there is no works council (less than 100 employees), they will consult the trade union delegation. If there is no trade union delegation either, the health and safety committee can be consulted. This right to consultation does not mean that these representative bodies have a veto right or a decision power, but they have the right to give their opinion on the proposed system. Ideally, the employer will take their remarks into consideration.

Last updated on 01/08/2022

Flag / Icon

Brazil

  • at CGM
  • at CGM
  • at CGM

No, employee representative bodies are not involved in the implementation of the whistleblowing procedure.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Croatia

Croatia

  • at Babic & Partners
  • at Babic & Partners

Yes, the involvement of employee representative bodies (the works council or, if there is no works council, a union trustee), provided that any such body exists with the  company, is two-fold:

  • the company must consult with the works council or union trustee regarding adoption of the whistleblowing policy – failure to do so would result in the adopted whistleblowing policy being null and void; and
  • the company must appoint the persons requested by the works council or union trustee as the WBP Officer and deputy; if no such request is made by the works council or union trustee, the  company may appoint the WBP Officer and deputy at its discretion.
Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Denmark

  • at IUNO
  • at IUNO

Not as a main rule. However, the employee representatives or works councils may argue that the implementation of the system falls within the scope of obligations in the Danish Information and Consultation of Employees Act.

Last updated on 30/11/2022

Flag / Icon

France

  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer

A company’s work council must be informed and consulted before the implementation of a whistleblowing procedure.

Indeed, work councils are informed and consulted “on all questions which are linked to the organisation, management and general running of the company and in particular on conditions of employment, professional training, working conditions and on the introduction of new technologies or any significant change in health and safety conditions or working conditions” (article L. 2312-8 of the Labor Code).

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Germany

  • at Oppenhoff
  • at Oppenhoff

Although the implementation of a whistleblower system is based on a legal obligation, the works council only has to be involved under certain circumstances.

At first, the employer is, in principle, already obliged to inform the works council in good time and comprehensively about everything it requires to carry out its duties. This information requirement should enable the works council to review whether co-determination or participation rights exist or whether other tasks have to be carried out according to the German Works Constitution Act (BetrVG).

For instance, instructions concerning the orderly conduct of employees are subject to co-determination. These instructions are intended to ensure an undisturbed work process or to organise the way employees live and work together in the company.  If, in the course of the implementation of a whistleblower system, the already existing contractual obligations are extended or regulations regarding the specific reporting procedure are introduced (eg, in the form of a reporting obligation on the part of employees), the organisational behaviour would be affected and the works council must therefore be involved (section 87 (1) No. 1 BetrVG).

Furthermore, in the context of setting up an internal reporting channel, the draft bill of the Whistleblower Protection Act only stipulates that whistleblowers must be given the option of submitting a report to the whistleblowing system in text form or verbally. This could, of course, also be provided via digital channels - eg, via software- or web-based solutions. Should the introduction and use of such technical equipment in the relevant case allow the employer to monitor the behavior or performance of employees (eg, those who deal with the complaint), further co-determination rights of the works council according to section 87 (1) No. 6 BetrVG can be triggered.   

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

India

  • at Khaitan & Co
  • at Khaitan & Co

No, employee representative bodies are not involved in the vigil mechanism. The whistleblowing mechanism will be overseen by a Covered Company through its Audit Committee or Board of Directors, as may be relevant.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Japan

  • at City-Yuwa
  • at City-Yuwa
  • at City-Yuwa

The Act does not require the involvement of employee representative bodies.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Latvia

Latvia

  • at Ellex Klavins
  • at Ellex Klavins

The Whistleblowing Act does not require the involvement of employee representative bodies in implementing the whistleblowing procedure. The involvement of employee representative bodies in the whistleblowing procedures is more consultative.

The Whistleblowing Act provides that trade unions and their associations, as employee representatives bodies: can provide support, including counselling, to whistleblowers to promote whistleblowing and whistleblower protection; provide support, including counselling, to its members concerning whistleblowing; and can apply to a public authority (body) or a court on behalf of a whistleblower who is a member of the trade union.

The Labour Act provides that employee representative bodies have the right to receive information from the employer and consult with the employer concerning the implementation of measures that affect or may affect the employment relationship. Therefore, it is advisable to inform or consult with employee representative bodies (if any) about the implementation of whistleblowing procedures to avoid the risk of administrative liability.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Lithuania

Lithuania

  • at Ellex Valiunas

There is no direct obligation to include employee representatives in the implementation of this system. However, since the employer must inform or consult with the works councils regarding the adoption of certain internal laws, including when they may be relevant to the social and economic situation of employees, the need to inform and consult with the works council can be inferred.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Luxembourg

Luxembourg

  • at Castegnaro
  • at Castegnaro

Yes.

When establishing the internal reporting procedure, a company's staff delegation must be involved in different ways, depending on the size of the company:

  • In companies with less than 150 employees, the information and consultation procedure with the staff delegation will commence. The staff delegation will have to be informed about the intention to set up or modify the whistleblowing channel and will be entitled to give opinions and propose changes.
  • In companies with 150 employees and more, the decision to set up or modify the whistleblowing channel will have to be made jointly by the employer and the staff delegation (co-decision).

Under the current regime, whistleblowing channels are mostly implemented unilaterally by employers in the financial and insurance sectors, but the previous consultation process with the staff delegation or, in larger companies, co-decision, should be respected.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Malta

Malta

  • at Camilleri Preziosi
  • at Camilleri Preziosi
  • at Camilleri Preziosi

There is no legal requirement (whether in the Act or local employment legislation) for an employer to inform or consult with employee representative bodies on its internal reporting channels and procedures.

Aside from the above, the Act recognises the right of employees to consult with their representatives or trade unions (without suffering any unjustified detrimental action for doing so), the autonomy of those social partners, and their right to conclude collective agreements, which remain unaffected by this Act.

Last updated on 16/11/2022

Flag / Icon
Nigeria

Nigeria

  • at Bloomfield LP

The Nigerian law is silent on the employee representative bodies’ involvement in the implementation of whistleblowing policies. However, the companies with whistleblowing policies do not involve employee representative bodies in the implementation of their system.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Poland

  • at Baran Książek Bigaj
  • at Baran Książek Bigaj

The legal entity will determine the internal reporting regulations after consultation with:

  • a company trade union organisation or,
  • employee representatives selected under the procedure adopted by the employer – if the legal entity does not have a company trade union organisation.

The consultations will last no less than seven days and no longer than 14 days from the date of submission by the legal entity of the draft internal reporting procedure.

Last updated on 17/11/2022

Flag / Icon

Portugal

  • at Cuatrecasas
  • at Cuatrecasas

No, but the provisions of Law No. 93/2021 do not affect the right of employees to consult their representatives or trade unions and the protective rules associated with the exercise of this right, and the right of trade unions, employers' associations, and employers to conclude a collective bargaining agreement.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Romania

  • at STALFORT Legal. Tax. Audit.
  • at STALFORT Legal. Tax. Audit.

The previous proposal of the law implementing the EU Whistleblowing Directive provided for employee representative bodies (ie, generally speaking trade unions, if they exist, or employee representatives) to be consulted when establishing the reporting procedures. The approved version as of 29 June 2022 does not provide for such consultancy procedure anymore; however, it remains recommendable.

Last updated on 16/08/2022

Flag / Icon

Spain

  • at Cuatrecasas
  • at Cuatrecasas
  • at Cuatrecasas

Yes. Section 5 of the Draft states that the management body or governing body of each entity or body that must establish “internal information systems” will be responsible for their implementation, after consultation with the employees´ legal representatives.

Moreover, collective-bargaining agreements may also establish certain obligations in this regard.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Sweden

  • at Lindahl
  • at Lindahl
  • at Lindahl

There is no obligation to include employee representative bodies in the implementation of whistleblowing procedures.

Last updated on 02/08/2022

Flag / Icon

United Kingdom

  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer

There is no specific legal requirement in the Employment Rights Act 1996 for employee representative bodies to be involved in (or otherwise agree to) the implementation of a whistleblowing procedure or policy. However, the rules in place with existing employee representative bodies may require consultation on any new policy or procedure and, in any event, it is best practice to involve employee representatives in the implementation of a whistleblowing system.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

United States

  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer

Employers with unionised employees may have a duty to bargain with the union if the whistleblower program can be deemed to affect the terms and conditions of employment of the union members.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

18. Is there a hierarchy between the different reporting channels?

18. Is there a hierarchy between the different reporting channels?

Flag / Icon

Australia

  • at Lander & Rogers

The hierarchical order for reporting a breach is:

  • employer;
  • competent authority or authorities (including ASIC, APRA, the Australian Federal Police, or a lawyer); and
  • the public or media.

Relevantly, the general rule is that a whistleblower must first report to their employer. However, if the employer does not adequately deal with the report, or the employee is not comfortable reporting to their employer, they can go to the competent authorities. As a last resort, the whistleblower may go public.

Last updated on 23/08/2022

Flag / Icon

Belgium

  • at Van Olmen & Wynant

There is a certain preference to start with an internal reporting procedure. However, the reporter does have the choice to immediately opt for external reporting and this choice does not have to be justified.

Last updated on 01/08/2022

Flag / Icon

Brazil

  • at CGM
  • at CGM
  • at CGM

Brazilian law does not govern this. However, from a practical perspective, there should be no hierarchy between the different reporting channels since all channels made available to whistleblowers should be equally reliable.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Croatia

Croatia

  • at Babic & Partners
  • at Babic & Partners

No, there is no hierarchy between the internal and external reporting channels, meaning that a whistleblower is completely free to choose whether to make a report internally or externally. On the other hand, the whistleblower may only publicly disclose irregularities if:

  • the whistleblower already submitted an external whistleblowing report (regardless of whether they first submitted an internal report), but no appropriate measures were undertaken in response to the report; or
  • the whistleblower did not submit an external whistleblowing report but has reason to believe that:
    • the irregularity represents an immediate and obvious danger to the public interest, for example in case of a crisis situation or risk of irreparable damage; or
    • if submitting an external whistleblowing report, there is a risk of retaliation or the prospect of the issue being remedied is low due to the special circumstances of the case.
Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Denmark

  • at IUNO
  • at IUNO

Three formats apply and can be organised in the following hierarchy:

Reporting via an internal channel

Internal reporting channels are the primary route, if available. Companies must encourage whistleblowers to report via the internal channel when such reports can be handled effectively, and there is no risk of retaliation.

Reporting via an external channel

External reporting channels are the secondary route. Whistleblowers can always use external channels that are made available but, again, are encouraged to use the internal channel when relevant.

Reporting via public disclosure

Public disclosure is the last resort. Whistleblowers can publicly disclose the information in the following scenarios:

  • the whistleblower has submitted a report via an internal and external channel or directly via an external channel, but the relevant whistleblower unit has not initiated the necessary measures within the feedback deadlines;
  • the whistleblower has reasonable grounds to believe that the breach entails an imminent or manifest danger to the public interest; or
  • the whistleblower has reasonable grounds to believe that reporting to the external channel will entail a risk of retaliation or a low prospect of the breach being effectively addressed, due to the circumstances of the case.
Last updated on 30/11/2022

Flag / Icon

France

  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer

The whistleblower can choose one of the following reporting channels:

  • internal via its hierarchy in the company or the referent designated by the employer according to the applicable whistleblowing procedure; or
  • external, either after having made an internal report, or directly to:
    • the competent authority among those designated by a future decree;
    • the Defender of Rights, who will direct them to the authority or authorities best able to handle it;
    • the judicial or administrative authority; or
    • an institution, body or agency of the European Union competent to collect information on violations falling within the scope of the 2019 Directive. 

A decree to be published will establish the list of authorities competent to collect and process external alerts.

Eventually, public disclosure of the alert is possible in the following situations:

  • no appropriate action has been taken in response to an alert made by an external channel at the end of a certain time set by decree;
  • imminent or obvious danger to the public; or
  • when an external notification would run the risk of retaliation or would not allow an effective remedy for the subject of the disclosure (for example, suspicion of conflict of interest, risk of concealment or destruction of evidence and collusion).
Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Germany

  • at Oppenhoff
  • at Oppenhoff

There is no legally binding hierarchy between internal and external reporting channels. The whistleblower has, in principle, the right to choose whether to report the violations externally or internally. If an internally reported violation is not remedied, the whistleblower making the report is free to contact an external reporting office (section 7 (1) HinSchG-E).

Although article 7(2) of the EU Whistleblower Directive provides that the member states will endeavour "to ensure that reporting through internal reporting channels is given preference over reporting through external reporting channels in cases where effective internal action can be taken against the infringement and the whistleblower does not fear reprisals", such prioritisation of the internal reporting channel cannot be inferred from the German draft bill.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

India

  • at Khaitan & Co
  • at Khaitan & Co

This would be subject to the policy and reporting channels prescribed under the whistleblowing policy.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Japan

  • at City-Yuwa
  • at City-Yuwa
  • at City-Yuwa

If reporting to the Recipient of Services etc., there is a method of reporting to a point of contact and a method of reporting directly to the reporting line, such as a superior.

When the whistleblower reports to a point of contact, the person in charge, who has a confidentiality obligation that is subject to a criminal penalty, will manage the whistleblowing.

On the other hand, if the whistleblower reports directly to the reporting line, the person who accepts the report does not necessarily have a confidentiality obligation that is subject to a criminal penalty[1]. However, this person will not conduct “out-of-scope sharing[2]” if out-of-scope sharing is prohibited under the internal rules of the business operator [3].

In addition, the protection requirements are different depending on whether the report is made to the Recipient of Services etc., an administrative organ within the authority, or the Others. On this point, please see question 22.

 

[1]   Consumer Affairs Agency Guidelines Explanation, supra note 3, Section 3 II(3)(i)(c) at p.19.

[2]   “Out-of-scope sharing” means the acts of sharing matters that identify whistleblowers beyond the necessary minimum range (Consumer Affairs Agency Guidelines, supra note 8, Section 2, atp.2.).

[3]   Consumer Affairs Agency Guidelines Explanation, supra note 3, footnote 36, at p. 19.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Latvia

Latvia

  • at Ellex Klavins
  • at Ellex Klavins

No, there is no hierarchy between the different reporting channels, but there are specific pre-conditions when whistleblowing may be done publicly: mainly, in cases when a whistleblower’s report has not been reviewed or there are reasons to believe that all other reporting channels would not be effective.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Lithuania

Lithuania

  • at Ellex Valiunas

No.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Luxembourg

Luxembourg

  • at Castegnaro
  • at Castegnaro

Yes.

1. Internal reporting to be preferred in the first instance by those wishing to report when:

  • It is possible to effectively remedy the violation internally – this implies that a formal internal reporting procedure is in place.

2. External reporting to the competent authorities[1]:

  • following an unsuccessful internal report;

  • in the absence of an internal reporting procedure (failure to comply with the law or a company with less than 50 employees not having set up a procedure voluntarily); and

  • direct reporting if it is not possible to effectively remedy the violation internally or when the individual believes there is a risk of retaliation (this is a subjective assessment depending on the seriousness of the reported facts and the people involved).

3. Public Disclosure

  • Subsidiary remedy:
    • prior recourse to internal and then external reporting or direct reporting and,
    • no appropriate action was taken in response to the report; 
  • Direct remedy: if there is reasonable cause to believe that:
    • the violation may represent an imminent or obvious danger to the public interest;
    • in the case of external reporting, the risk of retaliation or it is unlikely to be remedied due to the particular circumstances; 
 

[1] The competent authorities are: The Commission for the supervision of the financial sector; The Commissariat for insurance; The Competition Council; The Administration of Registration and Domains; The Labour and Mining Inspectorate; The National Commission for Data Protection; The Centre for equal treatment; The Ombudsman/External control of places of deprivation of liberty; The Ombudscomité fir d'Rechter vum Kand; The Luxembourg Regulatory Institute; The Luxembourg Independent Audiovisual Authority; The Bar Association; The Chamber of Notaries of the GDL; The Medical College; The Administration of Nature and Forests; The Administration of Water Management; The Administration of Air Navigation; The National Service of the Consumer Ombudsman; The Order of Architects and Consulting Engineers; The Order of Chartered Accountants; The Institute of Company Auditors; and The Administration of Direct Taxes.

 

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon
Malta

Malta

  • at Camilleri Preziosi
  • at Camilleri Preziosi
  • at Camilleri Preziosi

As a principle, whistleblowers are encouraged to first report to their employer through the internal reporting channels, where these are available and can reasonably be expected to work. As stated in the Directive, the idea is that the relevant information swiftly reaches those closest to the source of the problem and most able to investigate and with powers to remedy it, where possible. In certain circumstances, a whistleblower can disclose information to a competent authority or the public – see question 22.

Last updated on 16/11/2022

Flag / Icon
Nigeria

Nigeria

  • at Bloomfield LP

Usually, this is dependent on the procedures set out in the whistleblowing policy of a company, which could be either a single or hierarchical reporting channel.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Poland

  • at Baran Książek Bigaj
  • at Baran Książek Bigaj

A whistleblower may report externally without using firstly an internal channel. The external notification is accepted by the Ombudsman or a public authority.

A person who makes a public disclosure will qualify for protection under this Directive if any of the following conditions are fulfilled:

  • the person first reported internally and then externally, or directly externally under the Bill, but no appropriate action was taken in response to the report within the timeframe referred to in the Bill, unless the whistleblower has not provided a contact address to which the follow-up information should be provided; and
  • the whistleblower has reasonable grounds to believe that:
    • the breach may constitute an imminent or manifest threat to the public interest, such as where there is a risk of irreversible damage; or
    • in the case of external reporting, there is a risk of retaliation or there is a low prospect of the breach being effectively addressed, due to the particular circumstances of the case, such as where evidence may be con­cealed or destroyed or where an authority may collude with the perpetrator of the breach or anyone involved in the breach.
Last updated on 17/11/2022

Flag / Icon

Portugal

  • at Cuatrecasas
  • at Cuatrecasas

Reports of infringements are submitted by the whistleblower through internal or external reporting channels or are publicly disclosed. The whistleblower may only use external reporting channels when:

  • there is no internal whistleblowing channel;
  • the internal whistleblowing channel only allows the submission of complaints by employees, and the whistleblower is not an employee;
  • it has reasonable grounds to believe that the infringement cannot be effectively disclosed or resolved internally or that there is a risk of retaliation;
  • an internal complaint was initially lodged but no communication regarding the measures expected or to be taken following the complaint within the time limits laid down in article 11 of  Law No. 93/2021; and
  • the breach is a criminal offence or an infraction punishable with a penalty of more than 50,000 EUR.

The whistleblower can only publicly disclose an infringement if:

  • they have reasonable grounds to believe that the breach may constitute an imminent danger to the public interest, that the breach cannot be effectively disclosed to or dealt with by the competent authorities in the specific circumstances of the case or that there is a risk of retaliation, including in the case of an external complaint; or
  • they have filed an internal complaint and an external complaint, or an external complaint under the terms of Law No. 93/2021 without appropriate measures being taken within the time limits provided for in articles 11 and 15 of the referred law.
Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Romania

  • at STALFORT Legal. Tax. Audit.
  • at STALFORT Legal. Tax. Audit.

Whistleblowers are encouraged to use primary reporting systems at the company level – a path that may have an additional chilling effect. External channels should be chosen when the whistleblower identifies retaliation risks in internal channels or does not believe that internal reporting may efficiently lead to a remedy of the breach. Finally, public disclosure should be the last resort according to the Romanian parliament, although studies have shown that this is usually the most powerful tool.

Romanian civil society has criticised the current version of the Draft Law since it prevents whistleblowers from addressing the press. According to article 19 paragraph 2 of the Draft Law, whistleblowers are only allowed to publicly disclose information on breaches if at least three months have passed since the internal or external reporting. This period (which is not provided within the Whistleblowing Directive) may discourage whistleblowers from using broad disclosure to the press, since it may give the employer the chance to intervene and retaliate.

Last updated on 16/08/2022

Flag / Icon

Spain

  • at Cuatrecasas
  • at Cuatrecasas
  • at Cuatrecasas

The Draft clearly states that internal reporting channels are preferred (section 4.1 of the Draft), and that external reporting channels are complementary. However, the whistleblower is entitled to choose freely between both options.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

Sweden

  • at Lindahl
  • at Lindahl
  • at Lindahl

The Whistleblowing Act distinguishes between:

  • internal reporting;
  • external reporting; and
  • public disclosures.

According to the Whistleblowing Act, a whistleblower is always free to choose to report either:

  • internally via or outside the internal reporting channels; or
  • via external reporting channels.

External reporting outside external reporting channels and public disclosures, however; are only protected where specific conditions are met. The Whistleblowing Act allows:

  • external reporting outside external reporting channels where the whistleblower:
    • has reported externally without such reporting having resulted in appropriate follow-up action or where the whistleblower has not received feedback within the statutory timelines; or
    • has reasonable grounds to believe that there is an imminent or manifest danger to life, health, safety or risk of substantial damage to the environment or otherwise has a legitimate reason; or
    • has reasonable grounds to believe that external reporting would entail a risk of retaliation or not result in the irregularity being effectively addressed.
  • public disclosures (including social media posts) where the whistleblower:
    • has reported externally without such reporting having resulted in appropriate follow-up action or where the whistleblower has not received feedback within the statutory timelines; or
    • has reasonable grounds to believe that there is an imminent or manifest danger to life, health, safety or risk of substantial damage to the environment or otherwise has a legitimate reason; or
    • has reasonable grounds to believe that external reporting would entail a risk of retaliation or not result in the irregularity being effectively addressed.

The Whistleblowing Act does not limit the protection offered to whistleblowers under other legislation, such as the Discrimination Act, the Freedom of the Press Act and the Fundamental Law on Freedom of Expression.

Last updated on 02/08/2022

Flag / Icon

United Kingdom

  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer

Yes. In the UK, in addition to the general conditions that amount to a “protected disclosure”, there is essentially a tiered system of disclosure depending on to whom the disclosure is made. The disclosure requirements range from limited requirements for an internal disclosure to an employer up to more stringent requirements for external disclosures to a third party outside of the employer’s organisation. Please see question 11 for further details.

Last updated on 29/07/2022

Flag / Icon

United States

  • at Proskauer
  • at Proskauer

Yes. As noted above, under the Supreme Court holding in Digital Realty, the anti-retaliation provision of the Dodd-Frank Act only protects individuals who have provided information externally to the SEC and does not apply to internal reports.

The SOX anti-retaliation provision, in contrast, covers whistleblowers who raise their concerns internally within the company without going to the SEC.

This distinction matters because there are several important differences between the Dodd-Frank and SOX anti-retaliation provisions:

  • The statute of limitations for Dodd-Frank claims is up to 10 years, which is substantially longer than the 180-day statute provided in SOX;
  • Dodd-Frank allows for double back pay, unlike SOX, which provides for single back pay; and
  • An employee alleging retaliation under Dodd-Frank can file suit directly in federal district court without first being required to exhaust administrative remedies, unlike SOX, which only permits a lawsuit to be filed after administrative remedies have been exhausted.
Last updated on 29/07/2022