Lithuanian law permits citizens to report frauds against the U.S. Government under the False Claims Act, or violations of the provisions of the Securities & Exchange Act, Foreign Corrupt Practice Act, or Commodities Exchange Act.
What disclosures are currently protected?
Lithuania recently enacted a new whistleblower law that came into force in 2019 under which whistleblowers are protected for reporting a myriad of violations including threats to public health and safety, threats to the environment, and illegal use of public funds. Under this legal regime, whistleblowers are entitled to confidentiality and may not be held liable for the information they provide about violations or sued for defamation or slander if they reasonably believe that the information provided is correct.
Uniquely, Lithuania is one of the few nations that has included a whistleblower reward program in their legislation. However, none of the whistleblowers that have applied for awards under this law have had them granted. Therefore, whistleblowers should still consider reporting to U.S. regulators when the activity uncovered implicates the United States.
Can Lithuanian whistleblowers receive rewards?
Yes, although no whistleblowers have been granted a reward to date.
Recent updates and future legislative developments
Under the EU Whistleblower Directive Lithuania must have a national whistleblower law in place conforming to the Directive’s requirements, however, it is unclear whether Lithuania’s current law will be considered sufficient or whether Lithuania will update it.
Can/should Lithuanian whistleblowers report to U.S. officials?
No law in Lithuania currently prohibits Lithuanian citizens from reporting frauds against the U.S. government under the False Claims Act, or violations of provisions of other statutes including the Securities & Exchange Act, Foreign Corrupt Practice Act, or Commodities Exchange Act. Therefore, Lithuanian whistleblowers can and should report relevant violations to U.S. officials under these laws.