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We encourage members of the public to submit complaints and expressions of concern to us where there may be indications of breaches of company law.

In order to ensure that you provide us with the information that we need to review your complaint or expression of concern, we ask you to read carefully, and then complete, our Complaint Form. Once completed, you should send your Complaint Form to complaints@cea.gov.ie

What is a "Protected Disclosure"?
A protected disclosure is the making of a complaint (i.e., disclosure) by a worker relating to certain matters connected with their employment or with work-related activities, often referred to as “whistleblowing”. The disclosure can be made to the employer, or to a person or body prescribed by law to receive protected disclosures. 

Protected disclosures are governed by the Protected Disclosures Act 2014 (“the Act”), which has been amended by the Protected Disclosures (Amendment) Act 2022.

To qualify as a protected disclosure, the complaint must be: 

  • made by a “worker” (as defined by the Act); and 
  • of “relevant information” (as set out in the Act). 

"Relevant information"
Information is relevant information if: 

  • in the reasonable belief of the worker, it tends to show one or more “relevant wrongdoings”; and 
  • it came to the attention of the worker in connection with the worker’s employment.

"Relevant wrongdoing"
The Act sets out what is a relevant wrongdoing, and includes: 

  • that an offence has been, is being or is likely to be committed; 
  • that a person has failed, is failing or is likely to fail to comply with any legal obligation, other than one arising under the worker’s contract of employment; 
  • that a miscarriage of justice has occurred, is occurring, or is likely to occur; 
  • that an unlawful, or otherwise improper use of funds or resources of a public body, or of other public money, has occurred, is occurring or is likely to occur. 

The Corporate Enforcement Authority ("CEA") as a Prescribed Person
The CEA is prescribed by law to receive protected disclosures from workers in connection with all matters relating to the CEA’s functions (as set out under section 944D of the Companies Act 2014). To make a protected disclosure to the CEA:

  • the disclosure or complaint must be made by a “worker”; and
  • the “worker” must reasonably believe that (i) the relevant wrongdoing falls within the functions of the CEA as set out in section 944D of the Companies Act 2014; and (ii) the information disclosed, and any allegation contained in it, are substantially true. 

How to make a Protected Disclosure to the CEA
A protected disclosure can be made to the CEA in the following ways: 

  • by email to protected.disclosures@cea.gov.ie  
  • by post to the Corporate Enforcement Authority, 16 Parnell Square East, Dublin 1, D01 W5C2, marked "Protected Disclosure"; 
  • by telephone to the dedicated protected disclosures phoneline, telephone number +353 1 8585821.  
  • in person, at the CEA’s offices, at a time and date agreed with you. 

Further information on making a protected disclosure to the CEA can be found in our Protected Disclosures Policy.

All complaints, expressions of concern and protected disclosures are treated in accordance with our statutory confidentiality obligations. 

Protected disclosures legislation protects workers from retaliation. However, not every complaint or expression of concern is a protected disclosure, and it is recommended that persons considering making a protected disclosure seek independent advice before making a disclosure. 

Office of the Protected Disclosures Commissioner
The Protected Disclosures Commissioner has a range of powers under the Act, including the power to receive protected disclosures, and to redirect any disclosure made to an appropriate prescribed person, including the CEA.   

Annual reporting
The CEA is obliged to publish an annual report, by 31 March each year, setting out certain information on protected disclosures activities in the preceding year. The persons making disclosures are not identified. The CEA incorporates this reporting obligation into its Annual Report each year. 

Annual reports

CEA Report on Protected Disclosures 2022