Do you have knowledge of fraud within the commodity futures industry? If so, a CFTC whistleblower attorney can help you expose the misconduct and collect a financial bounty.
It is the duty of the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to investigate and sanction violations of the Commodity Exchange Act. This type of misconduct can take many forms, all of which are a threat to users of the futures and derivatives markets. The Dodd-Frank Act empowered the CFTC to reward people with knowledge of these violations for coming forward and becoming whistleblowers.
These rewards have the potential to range into the millions of dollars, and Dodd-Frank has granted a number of strong legal protections to whistleblowers, including the potential to remain anonymous. Doing so requires working with legal counsel, however, and a CFTC whistleblower lawyer from Meissner Associates can provide the legal experience and guidance your situation demands.
Submitting a Whistleblower Tip to the CFTC
Before submitting a tip for consideration by the CFTC, it’s important to know what criteria your information must meet in order for you to be eligible for a whistleblower reward. The Dodd-Frank Act laid out these requirements in great detail:
- Voluntary Information – In order to receive a reward, you must voluntarily supply your information. It cannot be surrendered as a result of a formal request from the CFTC or other regulators.
- Original Information – The tip you submit must contain information that the CFTC was not previously aware of. If another CFTC whistleblower provides the same tip before you do, you will not be able to receive a reward, making it essential to move quickly and decisively once you’ve become aware of fraudulent futures trading.
- Sanctions Recovered – Your reward is dependent on the CFTC enforcing sanctions due to the misconduct. Because your reward is a percentage of these sanctions, if none are collected, you can’t be rewarded.
- Sanctions in Excess of $1,000,000 – The sanctions recovered must exceed $1,000,000 for you to receive a reward. If this number is reached, the CFTC will grant you between 10 and 30 percent of the money collected.
Prospective whistleblowers sometimes hesitate before submitting their tip, concerned that their information won’t meet one of these criteria, thereby leaving them exposed. By working with a CFTC whistleblower lawyer, you can determine ahead of time whether your tip is likely to meet these requirements and be acted on, all while remaining anonymous and protecting your identity and privacy.
Factors That Determine Your Whistleblower Reward
CFTC whistleblower rewards can vary substantially. Not only is the exact amount of your reward dependent on the amount in sanctions recovered, but it can be anywhere from 10 to 30 percent of this amount.
When determining this percentage, the CFTC takes into account several factors:
- How quickly you submitted your tip regarding futures trading violations
- Whether you had some culpability in the violation
- How much assistance you were able to provide during the CFTC investigation
- Whether you first reported the violation to an internal compliance program
- Whether you interfered with an ongoing internal compliance program audit
In the event that you are culpable for some of the misconduct that took place, you could face legal action as well as sanctions yourself. It’s important to note that the amount of sanctions you have to pay does not detract from the $1,000,000 sanction threshold, although your financial responsibility will obviously impact your reward.
Additionally, you do not necessarily have to be an insider in order to submit a tip to the CFTC. If you have uncovered fraudulent futures trading through some form of independent analysis, a CFTC whistleblower lawyer from our firm will still be able to assist you with submitting your information and protecting your legal rights as a whistleblower.
What the CFTC Is Looking For
The CFTC is primarily interested in investigating and prosecuting violations of the Commodity Exchange Act. These violations can run the gamut, with some being subtle and pervasive schemes, and others being blatant misconduct. They will be interested in information regarding either, and the sooner you act, the higher the percentage of sanctions recovered you could be eligible for.
Listed below are just a few examples of fraudulent futures and derivatives trading that a CFTC whistleblower lawyer can help you expose:
- Registration violations
- Wash sales
- Pyramid schemes
- Off-exchange fraud
- Fraudulent misrepresentations
- Front running futures trading
- Swap price manipulation
- Interest rate manipulation
CFTC Whistleblower Protections
The Dodd-Frank Act granted a number of legal protections to whistleblowers. These protections are essentially two-fold. First, in most cases, you will likely be able to remain anonymous throughout the investigation, only publicly identifying yourself as a whistleblower if you choose to. Exercising this option requires retaining counsel, however, meaning that you’ll need to work with a CFTC whistleblower lawyer.
Second, you are protected from retaliation by the object of the CFTC investigation. Therefore, if you are an insider, you cannot be fired or demoted. In the event that you are, you can then be reinstated and eligible for compensation. Even as an outsider who provided an independent analysis of futures fraud, you cannot be harassed or threatened by the object of the CFTC investigation.
These legal protections are robust, allowing you to feel comfortable with coming forward with your information. You can be handsomely rewarded for your knowledge while enjoying the security that comes with these legal safeguards.
Become a CFTC Whistleblower
Meissner Associates has a long history of helping whistleblowers in various industries expose the wrongdoing they have encountered. We’ve been doing so since 2001, and our firm even helped craft the rules in Dodd-Frank that reward and protect whistleblowers. This is firsthand knowledge that will directly benefit you in your future as a whistleblower.
If you have knowledge of futures and derivatives fraud, you might be eligible for a sizable monetary reward from the CFTC. Hesitating too long can rapidly decrease the amount you receive, however, so it’s important to act as soon as possible.
Submit your information for a free and confidential tip evaluation today by simply completing the form below or by calling our office directly at 1-866-764-3100. An experienced CFTC whistleblower lawyer is standing by to help you through the process and onto your financial award.