A new law is poised to put bank whistleblowers at risk of retaliation. As an employee or contractor working for a large financial services institution, the risks involved with a whistleblowing claim can be substantial. These large institutions have the resources and power not only to end a person’s career but to continue litigation against that person. Whistleblower rewards don’t only provide a financial incentive for those with incriminating information about a company. This compensation can account for the career damage and wages a person might lose in the act of collecting evidence for a claim.
How the law creates provisions for whistleblowers
The Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020 (AMLA) expands on provisions made in the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) for rewards to informants and whistleblowers:
- These amendments provide incentives and protection against retaliation to those who provide original information about BSA violations to their employer, DOJ or the Treasury.
- The Treasury is then permitted to provide up to 30% of the total recovered sanctions for those sanctions over $1 million.
Potential risk areas
The law could allow the Department of Treasury to deny a reward for any person qualified as a whistleblower. The result could be that some whistleblowers might be excluded from any minimum rewards for providing information that could lead to sanctions. Though employees of insured depository institutions are still protected under existing regulations regarding retaliation, employees may have additional risk areas. Typically, the False Claims Act, Dodd-Frank Act and IRS whistleblower laws provide for minimum payments to qualified whistleblowers. Under the new act, employees for companies insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Act may not be able to receive the new anti-retaliation protections. If you’re considering reporting a case of fraud, you need to explore all your options for protecting yourself and your financial stability. The new law makes it even more important to consult with an experienced whistleblower attorney before reporting a case of fraud.