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Tag Archives: Stephen M. Kohn

Senators Laud Labor Department’s ‘Burden of Proof’ Interpretation for Whistleblowers

Posted in Department of Labor, News
US_Dept_of_LaborA bipartisan group of senators commended the Department of Labor, Administrative Review Board’s (ARB) interpretation of federal whistleblower protections provisions, clarifying the statutory burdens of proof in whistleblower cases. In two recent decisions, Fordham v. Fannie Mae, ARB No. 12-061 (Oct. 9, 2014) and Powers v. Union Pacific Railroad, ARB No. 13-034 (Mar. 20, 2105), the ARB found that employees should… Continue Reading

Stephen Kohn Discusses Treatment of Special Education Whistleblower in New York

Posted in News
On Friday March, 20, whistleblower advocate Stephen M. Kohn featured ‘Weekend Today in New York’ I-Team Report.  The I-Team report covered the story of a special ed teacher who was retaliated against by her school district after blowing the whistle on the fact that students who were not getting the help they are promised under law. Kohn described the retaliation… Continue Reading

NWC’s Stephen Kohn Honored on Most Influential in Business Ethics List

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers
Ethics100National Whistleblower Center Executive Director Stephen M. Kohn was named to Ethisphere Magazines 100 Most Influential in Business Ethics in its 2014 third quarter issue. Each year, Ethisphere recognizes 100 individuals that have made a material impact in the world of business ethics and compliance through the annual 100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics list.  Kohn came in at #… Continue Reading

NWC Participates in Transparency Roundtable

Posted in False Claims / Qui Tam, International
WLPKohn1On March 20, 2015, NWC Executive Director Stephen M. Kohn participated in a Roundtable of Transparency panel discussion presented as part of the U.S. State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program. Each year this program brings about 4,500 visitors to the US from 140 countries to learn how to use advocacy as the process of building consensus on national, regional, or local priorities… Continue Reading

SEC Sanctions KBR for Illegal Non-Disclosure Agreement

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers, False Claims / Qui Tam
KBRSEC Investigation into overly restrictive non-disclosure agreements was triggered by complaint filed by former KBR Contractor Harry Barko Washington, D.C. , 2015.  April 1, 2015.  Today the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission sanctioned defense contractor KBR for requiring its employees to sign restrictive non-disclosure agreements that prohibited employees from properly reporting fraud and misconduct to appropriate regulatory authorities.  A copy… Continue Reading

Big Win For Whistleblowers At Labor Department

Posted in Department of Labor, News
DepartmentOfLabor_LogoWashington, D.C. March 23, 2015. The U.S. Department of Labor’s top whistleblower appeals board issued a 3-2 ruling setting forth the burdens of proof in corporate whistleblower cases.  The decision, issued on Friday, March 20th by the DOL Administrative Review Board (Board) in the case of Powers v. Union Pacific Railroad Company, ARB Case No. 13-034, establishes an employee-friendly standard,… Continue Reading

NWC’s Kohn Speaks at Labor and Employment Conference

Posted in Events
Stephen M. Kohn, Executive Director of the National Whistleblower CenterStephen M. Kohn, executive director of the National Whistleblower Center gave a presentation at the 6th biennial Labor and Employment Law Conference, March 12, in New Orleans. During this conference, leading experts in labor and employment law made presentations on recent developments in all areas of labor and employment law. The Federal Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Section presented this two-day conference. Mr.… Continue Reading

FBI Whistleblower Jane Turner’s Case Featured In Washington Post

Posted in FBI Whistleblowers
FBI Whistleblower Jane TurnerOn March 4, 2015  the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the lack of whistleblower protections for FBI employees. A focus of the hearing was a February 2015 report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), which found that whistleblower protections at the FBI are weaker than at any other agency. The GAO Report found that the Department of Justice’s FBI… Continue Reading

Senate to Hold Hearing on FBI’s Treatment of Whistleblowers

Posted in Events, FBI Whistleblowers, News
senator-grassley-whistleblower-caucusWashington, D.C. February 27, 2015. The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing entitled  “Whistleblower Retaliation at the FBI: Improving Protections and Oversight,” on Wednesday, March 4, 2015 at 10am in the Committee’s main hearing room, 226 Dirksen. Witnesses include Department of Justice Inspector General,  a current FBI whistleblower and Stephen M. Kohn, Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center… Continue Reading

Bipartisan Group of Senators Launches Whistleblower Protection Caucus

Posted in Events, News
Utilizing Whistleblowers in the Fight Against Waste, Fraud and AbuseWashington, D.C. February 25, 2015. Today, Senator Charles Grassley announced the official formation of a Senate Whistleblower Protection Caucus during a press conference held in the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing Room.  The founding members of the caucus are Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA) (chairman), Ron Wyden (D-OR) (vice-chairman), Ron Johnson (R-WI), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Deb Fischer (R-NE) Thom Tillis (R-NC), Barbara… Continue Reading

Press Alert: Press Conference Wednesday to Launch Whistleblower Protection Caucus

Posted in Events, News
senator-grassley-whistleblower-caucusWashington, D.C.  February 24, 2015.  On Wednesday, February 25, at 2:30 p.m. (ET), Senators Chuck Grassley and Ron Wyden will host a press conference to launch the Whistleblower Protection Caucus in Room 226 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.  Sen. Grassley is the chairman of the caucus and Sen. Wyden is the vice-chairman. A number of whistleblowers and whistleblower advocates… Continue Reading

SEC Whistleblower program has historic year

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers
On November 17, 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of the Whistleblower released its 2014 Annual Report to Congress. According to the report, 2014 was a historic year for the SEC Whistleblower program in terms of both the number and dollar amount of whistleblower awards. The SEC issued whistleblower awards to more individuals in 2014 than in all… Continue Reading

Senator Grassley Steps Forward Once Again to Defend Whistleblowers

Posted in False Claims / Qui Tam, News
On July 30, 2014, the House Judiciary Committee Constitution and Civil Justice Subcommittee held a hearing on proposals by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to substantially weaken the False Claims Act (FCA). The FCA is the most effective whistleblower law and allows those with evidence of fraud against federal programs or contracts to sue the wrongdoer on behalf of the… Continue Reading

Senate Approves “National Whistleblower Appreciation Day” for Second Year

Posted in News
On July 30, 2014, by a unanimous resolution the U.S. Senate declared July 30 as “National Whistleblower Appreciation Day” for the second year in row.   The resolution comes on the anniversary of the first ever whistleblower protection law enacted on July 30, 1778. Stephen M. Kohn, Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center, first discovered the importance of this date… Continue Reading

Celebrate National Whistleblower Appreciation Day!

Posted in Events
Today is National Whistleblower Appreciation Day.  On this day in 1778 the Continental Congress passed what very well could be the world’s first whistleblower law.  Our revolutionary forefathers, when they learned that two whistleblowers that had exposed misconduct by the highest-ranking U.S. naval official, were being prosecuted in the State of Rhode Island, agreed to act.  They voted to spend… Continue Reading

Understanding the Risks of Whistleblowing

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers, News
In an article on the legal news website, Lawyers and Settlements, Stephen M. Kohn, Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center, explains that statistics reveal that most employees “who witness fraud or and violations of the law and don’t report it.”  In the article entitled Before You Blow the Whistle—Read This, Kohn explains the importance of consulting an attorney well versed in whistleblower law… Continue Reading

Full Court Review Requested in KBR Contracting Fraud Case

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers, False Claims / Qui Tam, News
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Whistleblower Seeks Release of Documents that Demonstrated Contracting Fraud during the War in Iraq Washington, D.C. July 28, 2014. Today, Mr. Harry Barko, a whistleblower who alleged that defense contractor KBR had engaged in widespread fraud during the War in Iraq, requested the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to review a major… Continue Reading

NWC Issues Action Alert to Save America’s Most Important Whistleblower Law

Posted in False Claims / Qui Tam
On July 25, 2014, the National Whistleblower Center issued the following Action Alert: Demand that the House Judiciary Committee cancel the hearing on False Claims Act “reform” scheduled for July 30, 2014. If the Committee is determined to hold the hearing, then a member of the National Whistleblower Center should be invited to testify as a witness. Urgent Action Needed!!… Continue Reading

Intelligence Whistleblowers Should Use “Expanded Protections” With Caution

Posted in National Security, News, Uncategorized
New intelligence community whistleblower protections lacking On July 7, 2014, President Obama signed the “Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014.” This bill includes a section providing “Protection Of Intelligence Community Whistleblowers.” These protections specify that employees who divulge information about possible misconduct within their agencies to their Inspectors General or other designated intelligence offices will be protected. Stephen M.… Continue Reading

We Must Stop Illegal Gag Orders

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers, False Claims / Qui Tam, News
The post below was co-authored by Stephen M. Kohn, Michael D. Kohn David K. Colapinto, partners of the law firm Kohn, Kohn and Colapinto, LLP.  One of the most destructive tools used to silence whistleblowers are non-disclosure agreements (often found in employment contracts and severance agreements) which prohibit employees from disclosing fraud and other crimes to law enforcement agencies.  Today’s Washington Post story… Continue Reading

Court Holds Arguments on Whether Documents Created by Non-Attorneys Are Protected by Attorney-Client Privilege

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers, False Claims / Qui Tam
Washington, D.C.  May 8, 2014. Yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit held oral arguments in the case of In re: Kellogg Brown & Root, Inc., et al. This appeal arises from a petition for a writ of mandamus filed by Kellogg Brown & Root Services Inc. over a judge’s order compelling the company to produce compliance investigation witness… Continue Reading

Report Reveals Federal Agencies’ Non-disclosure Policies Violate the WEPA

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
A report released today by Senator Charles Grassley, Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, reveals that most of the fifteen executive branch departments’ nondisclosure agreement policies violate the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act.  The law requires such agreements to contain an explicit statement notifying employees the agreements do not trump an employee’s rights and obligations under the law relating to… Continue Reading

Obama Administration Uses Privacy Act To Limit Congressional Oversight

Posted in Government Whistleblowers
The Washington Times reports today that  the Obama Administration is accused of using a broad interpretation of federal privacy statutes to block Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley from pursuing investigations such as “‘Fast and Furious’ gun-running scandal to the questioning of judicial nominees,” the article states. The article details how the Department of Justice invoked the Privacy Act to  bar the Senator  from… Continue Reading

Big Win for Corporate Whistleblowers at Supreme Court

Posted in Corporate Whistleblowers
SOX whistleblower protection covers mutual fund industry Washington, D.C. March 4, 2014. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today in Lawson v. FMR, LLC, that contractors and subcontractors of publicly traded companies are fully protected under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act for corporate whistleblowers. Significantly, in today’s decision the Supreme Court explicitly held that investment advisors and other “independent contractors” employed in the mutual… Continue Reading