Many people in California have their money in various banks. They rely on these banks to make sure their money is safe and well managed. Therefore, these banks are highly regulated to ensure that the banks are following the rules. However, some of these banks may take liberties with these regulations in order to make more money. It is important that regulators find out when they do and often times the best way for the regulators to find out is through the employees at the bank.
Employees who cooperate may be putting their job at risks though as the banks may retaliate against these employees. This is known as whistleblower retaliation and it is illegal. A former employee of Wells Fargo is alleging this was why he was recently fired and filed a lawsuit against the bank.
The employee stated that he believed that the bank’s incentive-pay system could lead to fraud and the customer’s being overcharged so the employees would receive their bonuses. The employee said he had made complaints internally and then was fired just days before he was going to meet with regulators to discuss these practices.
Employees who are retaliated against for reporting legal violations or cooperating in investigations may be entitled to compensation. Retaliation can come in many forms as well and is not just limited to employees who are fired. Retaliation can include demotions, loss of perks, transfers and other types of actions. This compensation can include back pay, repayment of lost benefits, reinstatement to their former position and compensation for other types of damages as well.
Many employees in California are aware that their companies may be violating the law. The various law enforcement agencies need to have this information to enforce the various regulations. Therefore employees are protected from retaliation from employers for reporting violations. Companies who do retaliate may be required to compensate the employee. Proving these cases is not always easy though and experienced attorneys may be a useful resource.
Source: www.latimes.com, “Former Wells Fargo trader alleges pay incentives could have led to foreign-exchange overcharges” James Rufus Koren, April 16, 2018