14 April 2022

The New EU Whistleblowing Directive: Get On Board Before The Regulations Hit Home In Your Territory

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Implementing the new EU whistleblowing directive in organisations across all EU member states poses a huge challenge. The deadline for implementing the directive has now passed, with a number of states yet to comply.
European Union Criminal Law
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Implementing the new EU whistleblowing directive in organisations across all EU member states poses a huge challenge. The deadline for implementing the directive has now passed, with a number of states yet to comply. Find out more about the status where you do business and what your company needs to do.

The deadline for implementing directive (EU) 2019/1937 – the 'whistleblowing directive' – passed on 17 December 2021. The intention of the legislation is to set a harmonised minimum standard of protection for those who report breaches of EU law, and all member states must transpose the new EU regulations into national law.

However, many organisations falling under the regime are yet to put new internal whistleblowing processes into place, meaning they are not ready to meet the new requirements and have not sought the assistance of a service provider who can make sure that the correct internal processes are in place. It is vital that these steps are taken urgently, in order to comply with the upcoming national regimes for the protection of whistleblowers.

Here is the latest from jurisdictions affected by the legislation so that you and your company can be prepared.

Implementation status across the EU


The Austrian Ministry of Labour has confirmed that work on transposition of the directive is in progress and that a draft law is being submitted to parliament.


With the advice the Belgian Labour Council a preliminary draft bill for the transposition of the directive has been issued. Federal government has indicated that it intends to adopt the draft law by the summer of 2022. 


A draft law to transpose the Directive into Bulgarian national law has been published. 


The new national law implementing the legislation on the protection of whistleblowing was approved by vote during its first reading in parliament on 25 January 2022.


A new whistleblower protection law has been adopted by parliament. The national law was passed with a vote of 49 to one.

Czech Republic

A bill was submitted to parliament on 9 February 2021 and successfully passed through the first stages of the legislative process. Based on the direct effect of the EU directive for public institutions, the Ministry of Justice has issued a methodology for public institutions, to serve as a compliance guide.


The law on the protection of whistlebower  was passed on 24 June 2021.


On the 26 January 2021, a new bill to transpose the EU directive on whistleblowing into law passed its first reading in Parliament. 


The introduction of the draft bill has been postponed several times, but is expected to be finalised and presented to parliament end of March. 


The French parliament has adopted new legislation – proposition de loi visant à améliorer la protection des lanceurs d'alerte – which reforms the existing law known as 'Sapin II', to bring the whistleblower protection framework in line with the directive.


The Federal Ministry of Justice has prepared an initial draft of the Whistleblower Protection Act, which it has shared with the other federal ministries. However, the draft bill has been rejected for the time being. The new coalition government has included the transposition of the directive in the coalition agreement and confirmed a transposition by June 2022.


The tenure of the committee responsible for the development of the new draft law was extended to 15 November 2021,  leaving little time for proper public consultation on the proposals which must also be debated and voted on in parliament.


No information has been published by the Hungarian government regarding implementation.


The directive has not yet been transposed into Irish law. The Irish government has published the general scheme of the Protected Disclosures (Amendment) Bill, but the bill is currently only in the pre-legislative scrutiny phase and, once finalised, will need to pass through a number of legislative stages in Ireland before it becomes law. However, the bill is on the government's priority legislation list, published in September 2021, and so is likely to be transposed soon in 2022.


According to information provided by the president of the Italian Anti-Corruption Authority (ANAC), a draft law was been prepared during 2021 with the involvement of ANAC's representatives. The legal authority granted to the government in April 2021, to prepare legislation implementing the directive, has expired. A new law to mandate the government to transpose the directive is being debated in the senate.


The Latvian Saeima approved the law, which seeks to transpose the directive into Latvian national law, during its final reading on 20 January 2022. It came into force on 4 February 2022. The new framework expands the scope of the directive to protect not just breaches of EU law, but also national illegality and unethical behaviour. 


Parliament adopted a new whistleblowing law one day before the deadline came into force for EU member states to transpose the directive. It came into force on the 15 February 2022.


On 10 January 2022, the Luxembourg Minister of Justice introduced bill of law n°7945, implementing the directive. Bill 7945 was published on 12 January 2022. It is anticipated that implementation of the bill will happen during 2022.


A new draft bill entitled 'Protection of the Whistleblower (Amendment) Act 2021 to amend and expand the protection of the current legislation – the Whistleblower Act (Cap 527) of 2013' has been published in Malta to transpose the directive.


A public consultation was held on a draft bill during the summer of 2020, and a further draft was sent to the Council of State for advice in December 2020. On 4 October 2021, the Home Affairs Committee submitted a report on its findings to (the rest of) the Lower House. On 16 December, the government announced that the implementation deadline of 17 December 2021 would not be met. A delay of a few months is expected. For the time being, the intended date of entry into force for smaller employers (50-249 employees) remains 17 December 2023.


Work is currently underway on a law to provide for the protection of whistleblowers. The bill was published in October 2021 for public consultation. On 15 December 2021 a government representative stated that a version was to be presented to committees during the first quarter of 2022.


In January 2020 the Ministry of Justice announced that it was working to transpose the directive and to implement anti-corruption legislation and strategies. In April 2021, the Council of Ministers approved the submission of a bill to the assembly to transpose the directive. After the draft bill was approved by Parliament and by the President, the new law was published on 20 December 2021. Law no. 93/2021 will come into force 180 days after its publication.


On 14 December 2021 a draft law was published by the Ministry of Justice. On 3 and 10 February 2022, another draft law (different from the aforementioned) was included on the government meetings agenda. Based on publicly available information, this has not been approved by the government. If it is approved, the draft will still need to be submitted to parliament for debate.

Slovak Republic

On 3 November 2021, the legislative process to implement changes to the Whistleblower Act began. Currently the interdepartmental comments procedure is pending (the assessment of comments submitted during the interdepartmental comments procedure started on 25 November 2021). The proposed changes are expected to enter into force on 1 May 2022.


The Ministry of Justice has issued a draft proposal for consultation.


A new draft law on whistleblowing to transpose the EU directive on the protection of whistleblowers was issued in Spain in March 2022 and is currently under discussion.


A proposed law was presented as a government bill, which was passed by the Swedish parliament on 29 September and entered into force on 17 December 2021. Entities with more than 250 employees are required to comply with the act by 17 July 2022 and entities with 50-249 employees by 17 December 2023.

Mitigating complexity

Marc Pruem, Head of Strategic Projects at TMF Deutschland AG, comments: "TMF Group can help mitigate the complexity of implementing streamlined whistleblowing processes and, when acting as an impartial whistleblowing officer, can create trust in the organisation's efforts to properly protect employees' rights."

Talk to us

TMF Group has regional whistleblowing experts across EU member states and can:

  • act as the outsourcing provider for a portfolio of compliance services
  • be the one point of contact for whistleblowing services, dealing with non-applicable/non-relevant allegations and engage with all different stakeholders where allegations are relevant
  • prevent any extra administration expenditure, where staffing is already tight
  • act as an impartial third party, outside of the hierarchical structure of the client, to ensure the protection of interests of the whistleblower under the regulation.

For further details of TMF Group's whistleblowing services, make an enquiry and we can help you further understand and discuss how the directive will affect your company.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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