SEC Charges CBRE, Inc. with Violating Whistleblower Protection Rule

October 24, 2023

by M&S Staff

SEC Charges CBRE, Inc. with Violating Whistleblower Protection Rule

By Richard Condit, Originally posted on, October 24, 2023

CBRE, Inc., a Dallas-based commercial real estate firm and subsidiary of CBRE Group, Inc., settled charges with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for violating the SEC’s whistleblower protection rule. Between 2011 and 2022, CBRE required employees seeking separation pay to sign a release stating they had not filed complaints against the company with any federal agency. The SEC found that this practice discouraged potential whistleblowers from reporting complaints to the Commission. Upon learning of the SEC’s investigation, CBRE cooperated, revised its releases for compliance, and informed over 800 affected employees about their whistleblower protection rights. CBRE agreed to a $375,000 civil penalty without admitting wrongdoing, and the SEC considered its cooperation and remedial efforts in the settlement.

“It is critical that employees are able to communicate with SEC staff about potential violations of the federal securities laws without compromising their financial interests or the confidentiality protections of the SEC’s whistleblower program,” said Eric Werner, Regional Director of the SEC’s Fort Worth Office. “We commend CBRE for its swift and far-reaching remediation and for its high level of cooperation with our staff, which is reflected in the terms of the resolution.”

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