Employer Asks 8th Cir. to Mull ‘Whistle-Blower’ Meaning

By Yin Wilczek

Aug. 7 - A Nebraska-based securities clearing firm July 28 asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit to take up its appeal of a "significant issue of first impression" for the court-what constitutes a "whistle-blower" under the Dodd-Frank Act.

The case concerns a question certified from the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska in July: whether Julie Bussing-a former employee of Legent Clearing LLC, now known as COR Clearing LLC-qualified as a "whistle-blower" under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act even though she failed to report any suspected securities violation to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

If the Eighth Circuit agrees to hear the appeal over Bussing's opposition, it will be the third federal appellate court to consider the issue.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit-the first appellate court to tackle the issue-concluded in Asadi v. G.E. Energy (USA) LLC that Dodd-Frank's whistle-blower protections cover only those who initially approached the SEC.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit currently is mulling the question, after hearing oral argument in Liu v. Siemens AG .

In February, the SEC filed an amicus brief in Liu clarifying that whistle-blowers are entitled to protection under its rules whether they report the wrongdoing to their employers or to the commission.


To contact the reporter on this story: Yin Wilczek in Washington at ywilczek@bna.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Phyllis Diamond at pdiamond@bna.com

The employer's petition is available at http://www.bloomberglaw.com/public/document/Julie_Bussing_v_ COR_Securities_Holdings_et_al_Docket_No_1408015_8 .