Allison Martin

Allison Martin

Allison Martin is an associate in the Labor & Employment Law Department. Allison’s practice includes a wide range of employment litigation matters at the state and federal levels, including employment discrimination arising under Title VII and similar state statutes, retaliation claims, and wage-and-hour issues. Allison also plays an important role in advising clients on employee leave policies.

At Seton Hall University School of Law, Allison was an Articles Editor for the Seton Hall Law Review. While in law school, Allison interned for Chief Judge Garrett E. Brown (Ret.) of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.

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Missouri Court of Appeals Upholds $1.5 Million Whistleblower Jury Verdict

On January 22, 2018, the Missouri Court of Appeals upheld a jury verdict awarding approximately $1.5 million in damages to a radiation oncologist after finding that she had been constructively and wrongfully terminated in violation of Missouri law (specifically, “Missouri public policy”) in retaliation for reporting alleged instances of substandard medical treatment and fraud. Kim … Continue Reading

Two Illinois Federal Courts Rule That Illinois Whistleblower Act May Provide For Individual Liability

Two courts in the Northern District of Illinois recently ruled that the Illinois Whistleblower Act (IWA) (740 ILCS § 174/5) provides for individual liability.  Bello v. Village of Skokie, No. 14-cv-1718 (N.D. Ill. Sept. 2, 2014 and Dec. 31, 2015); Hower v. Cook County Sheriff’s Office, No. 15-cv-6404 (N.D. Ill. Feb. 16, 2016).… Continue Reading

ARB Broadly Interprets Adverse Action Once Again

On November 24, 2015, the ARB adopted an expansive interpretation of what constitutes an adverse action for claims asserted under the Federal Railroad Safety Act of 1982 (FRSA), holding that a reduced performance rating with no compensation-related consequences and a failure to pay medical bills in connection with a work-related accident are actionable. Fricka v. National … Continue Reading

New Jersey District Court: Dodd-Frank Protects Internal Whistleblower

Further reflecting the divide amongst courts regarding the definition of “whistleblower” under the Dodd-Frank Act, the District Court of New Jersey recently held that an employee who internally reports an alleged securities law violation is subject to the statute’s anti-retaliation protections.  Dressler v. Lime Energy, No. 3:14-cv-07060, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 106532 (D.N.J. Aug. 13, … Continue Reading

Second Circuit Entertains Argument on Scope of Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Provision

The Second Circuit recently entertained oral argument in Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy, focusing on whether the Dodd-Frank whistleblower protection provision covers individuals who only complain internally about alleged securities law violations rather than reaching out to the SEC.  We previously posted on the Southern District of New York’s December 5, 2014 ruling in this matter that … Continue Reading

OSHA’s Recent Guidance on Whistleblower Retaliation Investigations

The Directorate of Whistleblower Protection Programs recently issued a guidance memorandum titled “Clarification of the Investigative Standard for OSHA Whistleblower Investigations,” for the apparent purpose of clarifying the standards for its whistleblower investigations.  A review of this memorandum provides employers with insight as to the standard OSHA uses to determine whether a merits finding is in … Continue Reading

SEC’s Limit on Retroactivity of Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Bounty Awards Is Reasonable, Second Circuit Holds

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals recently deferred to the SEC’s determination that a tipster who provided information to the Commission before July 21, 2010, the effective date of the Dodd-Frank Act, is not eligible to receive a whistleblower bounty payment.   Stryker v. SEC, Case No. 13-4404-ag (2d Cir. Mar. 11, 2015).… Continue Reading

NY Whistleblower Bounty Program On The Horizon?

NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman recently announced his plans to propose legislation that would create a whistleblower incentive program at the state level.  The proposal, titled the Financial Frauds Whistleblower Act, would provide monetary awards to eligible individuals who report original information about illegal activity in the banking, insurance, and financial services industries.  The Financial … Continue Reading

SDNY Follows Asadi: Internal Tipsters Not Dodd-Frank “Whistleblowers”

On December 5, 2014, the Southern District of New York in Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy, No. 14-cv-523, ruled that an employee who complains internally about securities law violations does not qualify as a “whistleblower” under the Dodd-Frank whistleblower protection provision because that statute only protects individuals who report to the SEC.  The court followed the Fifth … Continue Reading

New York Times Discusses the Growth of Whistleblower Programs

As federal agencies dole out record-breaking awards to tipsters (such as the SEC’s recent $30 million award), whistleblower programs remain a topic of public interest.  Earlier this month, The New York Times published an article about the growth of the whistleblower programs operated by the S.E.C., Justice Department, and I.R.S, which financially incentivize the reporting of misconduct.… Continue Reading

ARB Affirms Blacklisting Award To Whistleblower

The ARB upheld a damages award in favor of a whistleblower after his former employer purportedly “blacklisted” him by providing an apparently negative employment reference to a prospective employer.  Timmons v. CRST Dedicated Services, Inc., ARB Case No. 14-051 (Sept. 29, 2014).  This underscores the impact whistleblower laws have on employers’ post-termination conduct.… Continue Reading

SEC Issues Whistleblower Award, Waives Voluntary Requirement

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) decided that a whistleblower who did not “voluntarily” provide information to the SEC was nonetheless eligible to receive a monetary award of $400,000. The whistleblower’s disclosure was not voluntary under the SEC’s own rules because it occurred after a previous inquiry to the company by a self-regulatory organization.  Nevertheless, the … Continue Reading

Nebraska District Court: Employee’s Disclosures To FINRA Make Her A Dodd-Frank Whistleblower

In a first-impression decision, the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska recently ruled that an employee who disclosed information about potential securities law violations to FINRA may qualify as a “whistleblower” under Dodd-Frank, even though the employee did not provide any information to the SEC.  Bussing v. COR Clearing, LLC, No. 12-cv-00238, 2014 U.S. … Continue Reading

New York Court of Appeals Expands Potential For State Whistleblower Claims

The New York Court of Appeals recently ruled that a whistleblower need not plead the specific “law, rule or regulation” that the employer purportedly violated to state a cause of action under the New York whistleblower statute.  Webb-Weber v. Cmty. Action for Human Servs., 2014 N.Y. Slip. Op. 03428 (May 13, 2014).  The New York … Continue Reading

Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Asks Congress to Increase OSH Act Whistleblower Statute of Limitations

On April 29, 2014, David Michaels, the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, testified before the U.S. Senate subcommittee of the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions regarding proposed changes to the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (“OSH Act”) whistleblower provision. After highlighting some the recent changes in the … Continue Reading

OSHA Releases Interim Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Regulations

OSHA recently released the interim final text of regulations implementing the whistleblower protection provision (Section 1057) in Dodd-Frank. The interim final regulations establish the timing and processes for handling Dodd-Frank whistleblower complaints, including the procedures for filing a complaint with OSHA, OSHA’s investigation of the complaint, issuance of a decision and order, and appeals.  OSHA … Continue Reading

Illinois Whistleblower Awarded $3 Million Following Jury Trial

In what appears to be an alarming trend for employers, the Chicago Tribune recently reported that a former Chicago State University employee was awarded $3 million after a Cook County, Illinois jury found that the University retaliated against him for reporting alleged misconduct by top university officials in violation of the Illinois State Official and … Continue Reading

SEC’s Strategic Plan Includes Reliance On Whistleblower Tips

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published (for public comment) a draft strategic plan, which sets forth its goals and objectives for fiscal years 2014 through 2018.  The SEC’s “strategic objectives” include: fostering compliance with federal securities laws; ramping-up efforts to “promptly detect and deter violations of federal securities laws”; and prosecuting violations of … Continue Reading

ARB: “Clear And Convincing Evidence” Needed To Support After-Acquired Evidence Doctrine

The ARB recently ruled that an employer advancing an after-acquired evidence defense in an AIR 21 whistleblower case must prove the defense by clear and convincing evidence.  Clemmons v. Ameristar Airways, Inc., ARB No. 12-105, ALJ No. 2004-AIR-011 (ARB Nov. 25, 2013).  This is the same standard that applies to an employer’s burden of showing, … Continue Reading
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