Whistleblowing - the international perspective

Headline summaries of whistleblowing laws across a range of jurisdictions.

Whistleblowing remains a hot topic across a wide range of sectors, particularly in the financial services sector and has become increasingly important part of the employment law landscape. This is in part due to the fact that there is increased emphasis on encouraging whistleblowing claims and in part due to the fact that in some jurisdictions compensation for whistleblowing claims can be unlimited.

For organisations with an international workforce, having a consistent approach and policy across the workforce can be particularly challenging. The legislative framework within which such policies must operate varies enormously by country - some having no protection whatsoever and some having, for example, protection which applies only to the public sector.

The European Commission has proposed a draft directive to strengthen whistleblower protection across the European Union. This remains subject to review and approval by the European Parliament and the European Council. Please see our elexica article for a high level overview of the proposed regulations.

In the meantime, in order to help international employers consider their options within the current legislative framework, Simmons & Simmons International Employment Issues microsite contains updated summaries of the law applying to whistleblowers across a range of jurisdictions including England & Wales, Germany, France, Italy, Hong Kong, Netherlands, People’s Republic of China and Spain.

Further information (from an England and Wales perspective) on whistleblowing policies, FI sector requirements and whistleblowing in an Investigation context can be found on our Whistleblowing microsite, and/or Investigations microsite.

In addition, we have provided headline overviews of these jurisdictions as an International snapshot and collated a Whistleblowing matrix offering a quick and easy international comparison table.

This document (and any information accessed through links in this document) is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this document.