Slovakian law permits all Slovaks 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?
In 2014, Slovakia implemented legislation dedicated to protecting whistleblowers in the public and private sector called: ‘The Act on Certain Measures Related to the Reporting of Anti-social Activities’ (hereinafter: “the Act”).
Positively, this law does not require employees to report violations internally before reporting externally to law enforcement. It also requires all public and private sector employers with 50 or more employees to designate a confidential internal reporting channel and issue rules on making disclosures. Additionally, a successful whistleblower may be awarded a fee in the case of a successful criminal prosecution stemming from their disclosure.
However, there is no automatic entitlement to an award and although an Office on the Protection of Whistleblowers was established in March of 2019, it has not begun functioning at this time. Therefore where whistleblowers seeking to report externally should submit complaints remains unclear. For this reason whistleblowers may be better off reporting to U.S. regulators, at least until the new Office on the Protection of Whistleblowers is up and running and the transposition of the Whistleblower Directive is complete.
Can Slovak whistleblowers receive rewards?
Whistleblowers in Slovakia may receive rewards, however, it remains unclear under what circumstances awards may be granted. Additionally, Slovakian whistleblowers may receive rewards through U.S. laws.
Recent updates and future legislative developments
Slovakia is required to implement the requirements of the EU Directive on Whistleblowing into its national law. However, it has not yet announced that it has begun this process.
Can/should Slovak whistleblowers report to U.S. officials?
No law in Slovakia currently prohibits Slovak 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, Austrian whistleblowers can and should report relevant violations to U.S. officials under these laws.