Report FCPA Violations
The Average Whistleblower Award is Almost $5,000,000
Reporting FCPA violations is quick, easy and anonymous with the help of the award-winning FCPA whistleblower attorneys at FTI Law. The first person to report a violation gets the award so report now before someone else claims your award. The first step is to take our anonymous, award-winning online evaluation:
Contact An Experienced FCPA Whistleblower Attorney
Whistleblower awards are paid to the 1st person who reports. Speak with an FCPA lawyer now
Call us at: +1-212-220-9760
EXPERIENCED FCPA WHISTLEBLOWER ATTORNEYS
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA)
The FCPA is a law that very few attorneys have experience dealing with. At FTI Law, our managing attorney John Joy has been handling FCPA cases for almost a decade. John is an experienced FCPA lawyer who has handled FCPA cases around the globe and has dealt with government agencies like the DOJ and SEC when investigating FCPA violations.
The Need For FCPA Experience
Making a good FCPA whistleblower submission requires familiarity with the law and enforcement trends. Many inexperienced attorneys believe that FCPA whistleblowers just have to give details about bribery. However, the FCPA has far more relevance to internal controls violations when it comes to enforcement actions. If you are looking for an experienced FCPA whistleblower attorney, then talk to us now.
An FCPA whistleblower attorney should have experience investigating violations in a multitude of countries and industries. At FTI Law, we pride ourselves in the depth of experience we have handling FCPA cases in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe and South America. If you think you have information on an FCPA violation you would like to report, contact us now.
If you’d like to learn more about the FCPA, check out our Annotated version of the FCPA Resource Guide.
HOW TO REPORT FCPA VIOLATIONS
If you have information on an FCPA violation contact us now to find out if you can get a whistleblower award.
An FCPA whistleblower recently received $28 million for reporting FCPA violations. Make sure you report before someone else does.
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is a U.S. law that prohibits bribery. The FCPA is enforced by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) who regularly issue fines to companies for violating the FCPA. Of note, the SEC also issues million-dollar awards to people who report FCPA violations. If you want to report FCPA violations, here are 5 important steps to take:
1. Speak To An Experienced Attorney
If you are thinking of reporting an FCPA violation, it is critical that you speak with an experienced FCPA attorney. If you report an FCPA violation to your employer or someone else before speaking with an attorney, you may face retaliation or lose out on the possibility of claiming a whistleblower award. This can happen even if your employer offers ‘confidential’ reporting or a ‘whistleblower hotline.’ FTI Law has experienced FCPA attorneys and offers free consultations that are completely confidential. Speaking to an attorney will cost you nothing, assist you report the FCPA violation and often, the attorney may be able to report the FCPA violation on your behalf.
2. Get Familiar With The Elements Of An FCPA Violation
Whether you are reporting the violation yourself or using an attorney, the DOJ and SEC will expect you to have some basic knowledge about the FCPA. This means you should get familiar with the elements of an FCPA violation before you report. This is something you can discuss with your attorney, or check our article on how to recognize an FCPA violation. The key elements will be describing the government official involved, the item of value that was given or promised to them, and the motivation for the actions.
3. Gather Evidence To Support Your Claim
In addition to reporting what you have witnessed, you can also supply documents, emails or other evidence to support claim. This will help convince the DOJ and SEC to investigate the FCPA violation. However, it is also important that you do not obtain evidence illegally, such as by accessing other people’s property or devices without their permission. When figuring out what evidence to gather, your attorney will be able to advise what it is safe to collect and what it is not. Even if your employer has made you sign an Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA), you are always entitled to speak to your attorney about these issues without breaching the NDA.
4. Decide Where To Report First
When reporting an FCPA violation, you may be entitled to a whistleblower award for reporting and potentially protection from retaliation. However, much of this could depend on who you report to first. For example, certain U.S. laws provide protections for individuals who report FCPA violations to federal regulators like the SEC and DOJ. However, those protections do not apply if the person only reports to their employer. Similarly, if you report an FCPA violation to the SEC, you could be entitled to an SEC whistleblower reward, but reporting only to the DOJ may affect your ability to claim an award. In 2021, the SEC paid a whistleblower $28 million for reporting FCPA violations.
5. Don’t Delay In Reporting
Both the SEC and DOJ have specific time limits in which they can prosecute FCPA violations. For certain violations, this could be as short as 5 years, and an investigation could take 2-3 years. If you want the SEC and DOJ to investigate the violation, you need to give them as much time as possible by reporting early. If you want to claim a whistleblower award this is especially important, as if someone reports the same information you have before you, they will get the whistleblower award. Even if you are the only person with the information, the SEC can reduce a person’s award if they delayed in reporting.
Claim An FCPA Whistleblower Award
If you have information on an FCPA violation contact us immediately to find out if you can claim a whistleblower award.
FCPA FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
When you work for an American company, or a company with stock traded in the United States, it’s important to know what the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) says about bribing foreign officials. You might think that the law only applies to bribes paid by companies from other countries, but it also applies to bribery within the U.S. itself. And if you report a company for violating the FCPA you could be entitled to some pretty big financial rewards!
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is a U.S. law that prohibits the payment of bribes to foreign officials. The FCPA applies to any person or company that does business in the United States and can result in criminal penalties, including fines and imprisonment for up to 10 years per violation.
The FCPA was enacted in 1977 as part of a broader anti-corruption effort by the U.S. government to maintain transparency within U.S.-based companies who are doing business abroad. The goal was simple: Make sure businesses were not taking advantage of their access to foreign officials so they could win contracts at lower costs than competitors would pay if they didn’t play by these rules.
A whistleblower award is a payment you can receive from the U.S. government when you report a violation of U.S. law. An FCPA Whistleblower award is a payment you can receive for reporting violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). This can include providing information on companies who commit fraud, bribery or corrupt activities. The average whistleblower award is almost $5 million. If you want to claim a multi-million dollar whistleblower award, contact us now.
First, use our online evaluation to find out if you qualify for an award. If you qualify, our attorneys will handle everything for you for free, in exchange for part of your reward. If you don’t get a reward, you don’t pay anything.
The average award paid by the SEC is almost $5 million.
Some whistleblower lawyers, like those at FTI Law, specialize in representing a certain type of whistleblower. We specialize in representing FCPA whistleblowers, which means whistleblowers who want to report bribery or corruption committed by a company traded on a US stock exchange. Often, FCPA whistleblowers are not from the United States, and we have cross-border expertise that helps us guide non-U.S. nationals through the whistleblower process. If you want to explore the idea of becoming an FCPA whistleblower, make sure to talk to one of our FCPA whistleblower attorneys as soon as possible.
FCPA fines are enormous, and often run into the billions of dollars. For example:
- In 2019 Swedish Telecom Giant Ericsson paid over $1 Billion to settle charges that it violated the FCPA in multiple countries by bribing public officials to win business.
- In 2020, French aeronautics company Airbus paid more than $3 billion to settle charges that it had made payments to government officials to help its business.
- In 2018, Brazilian Energy behemoth Petrobras paid over $1.7 billion to settle corruption and bribery charges.
A lot of companies have paid FCPA fines, here are a few:
- 2008 – Siemens AG paid $350 million to settle the SEC’s charges of violating the FCPA, as well as a $450 million fine to the DOJ to settle criminal charges.
- 2014 – ALCOA paid $175 million to the SEC and a fine of $209 million for bribing government officials in Bahrain.
- 2014 – Marubeni Corporation paid an $88 million fine for paying bribes to Indonesian government officials in order to win business.
- 2016 – Och-Ziff paid $413 million to settle charges that the paid bribes to government officials in Africa.
- 2016 – JPMorgan Chase agreed to pay $264 million for hiring relatives of government officials who had influence over JP Morgan’s business.
- 2016 – Odebrecht paid $3.5 billion following an enormous bribery scandal in Brazil.
- 2016 – Teva Pharmaceutical paid $519 million to settle charges that it paid bribes in Russia, Ukraine and Mexico.
- 2017 – Rolls-Royce paid $809 million as a result of a long-running scheme to bribe government officials in exchange for government contracts.
- 2017 – Orthofix International agreed to pay more than $14 million to settle charges that it bribes doctors hospitals in Brazil in order to win more business.
Yes. With the help of FTI Law, you can report anonymously.
Many government agencies pay whistleblower rewards, but FTI Law specializes in helping people report to the most successful whistleblower program which is run by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
FTI Law specializes in helping people report violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) but you can also report violations of any Securities Law, Commodities law or tax law to the SEC, CFTC or IRS.
The quickest and easiest way to find out is to take FTI Law’s online evaluation here.
It’s an award winning way to give you quick, simple answer for free.
If you think your company has violated the FCPA, you should say something. However, it is important to understand the risks and rewards associated with reporting FCPA violations. First, let’s take a look at the risks of reporting to your supervisor.
If you think your company has committed an FCPA violation and you tell your supervisor, be prepared for the repercussions. FCPA violations are criminal and if your supervisor or others in the company think you are accusing them of being involved, they may retaliate against you in any number of ways:
- They may not promote or reward you for your efforts.
- They could take away perks that were previously available to you and other employees who have helped them with their illegal activities;
- They could even fire you because they don’t want anyone around who knows what is going on behind closed doors at work.
Even if your company has a confidential reporting hotline, most whistleblowers will tell you that it is impossible to keep your identity a secret once you report within an organization. Ultimately, there is a lot of downside risk for reporting internally, and virtually no upside risk. Hopefully some day this will change, and companies will provide whistleblower rewards to people who report violations, but for now, reporting internally is not a very good course of action.
If you’re not sure whether your company would do the right thing and report an FCPA violation, then it’s best to take matters into your own hands. The good news is that the SEC lets you report FCPA violations anonymously if you enlist the help of an attorney. In addition, the SEC will pay whistleblowers up to 30% of any fine they recover as a bounty for reporting the violation. The average whistleblower reward paid by the SEC is almost $5 million. This means you could become a millionaire for doing the right thing.
Another benefit of reporting to the SEC is that whistleblowers who report FCPA violations to the SEC get additional protections against retaliation from their employers. This means that if your company retaliates against you for speaking to the SEC, you can sue them for damages. However, these protections only apply to workers in the United States. Employees from abroad can claim whistleblower awards, but are not entitled to legal protection against retaliation.
Yes. On May 19, 2021, the SEC announced an award of more than $28 million to a whistleblower whose tip led to Panasonic paying a $281 million FCPA settlement with a U.S.-regulators.
The SEC receives between 100-200 FCPA tips each year. Here are the figures:
- 2020 – 208 FCPA tips
- 2019 – 200 FCPA tips
- 2018 – 202 FCPA tips
- 2017 – 210 FCPA tips
- 2016 – 238 FCPA tips
- 2015 – 186 FCPA tips
- 2014 – 159 FCPA tips
- 2013 – 149 FCPA tips
- 2012 – 115 FCPA tips
As of December 2022, here are the top ten fines paid for FCPA violations:
- Odebrecht – $3,557,626,137
- Goldman Sachs – $2,617,088,000
- Airbus – $2,091,978,881
- Petrobras – $1,786,673,797
- Ericsson – $1,060,570,832
- Telia Company – $965,604,372
- Mobile Telesystems – $850,000,400
- Siemens – $800,002,000
- VimpelCom – $795,326,798
- Alstom – $772,291,200
FCPA violations involve a company giving something of value to a foreign official in order to obtain or retain business. Here are some examples:
- A company pays a bribe to a government minister in order to win a contract from the government;
- A company gives a job to the son of a government official in order to gain favor with the government;
- A company pays for vacation and travel for a government employee who has control over whether the company obtains a license;
- A company promises a government official that if they win business from the government, the company will subcontract work to a local company owned by the family of the government official;
- A company bidding on a government contract pays money to a third party consultant who promises that he can obtain inside information on other bids from contacts he has within the government.
The greatest protection an FCPA whistleblower has is their anonymity. By using a qualified attorney, an FCPA whistleblower can report FCPA violations to the government without ever revealing their identity.
In addition, if the whistleblower works in the United States and reports the violation at their company, the whistleblower is protected against retaliation under two federal laws (Sarbanes-Oxley and Dodd-Frank).
For individuals convicted of FCPA violations, penalties can include:
- Up to five years in imprisonment
- Up to $100,000 in criminal penalties
- Up to $10,000 in civil penalties
For companies convicted of FCPA violation, penalties can include:
- Up to $2,000,000 in criminal penalties
- Up to $10,000 in civil penalties
The FCPA has two main provisions:
- (1) an anti-bribery provision which makes it illegal for companies to make corrupt payments to foreign officials for the purpose of obtaining or retaining business and
- (2) an accounting provision which requires companies to have an adequate system of ‘internal controls’ to ensure that the companies transactions are recorded properly and executed in accordance with management’s directions.
The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is a U.S. law that prohibits people from paying bribes to foreign officials to further business. Both the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) are responsible for enforcing the FCPA.
The FCPA Report is a part of FTI Law’s blog dedicated to FCPA issues. If you want to learn more about the FCPA, check out the FCPA Report here. If you are looking for more FCPA reports, you can also take a look at our annotated FCPA Resource Guide.