U.S. Supreme Court Adopts Narrow View of Who Can Rely on Dodd-Frank Act’s Anti-Retaliation Protections

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on February 21, 2018 that the Dodd-Frank Act’s anti-retaliation provisions protect only whistleblowers that make a report to the SEC, and do not apply to whistleblowers who report internally. The Court’s ruling, which resolved a circuit split on the question of who was entitled to the Act’s provisions, will significant limit the scope of the anti-retaliation protections. The Court’s February 21, 2018 opinion in Digital Realty Trust, Inc. v. Somers can be found here.   Background Paul Somers claimed that when Digital Realty Trust fired him in 2014, it was in retaliation for his internal report to company management that the company had improperly eliminated certain internal controls. Somers filed an action claiming that the company’s action in firing him violated the Dodd-Frank Act’s whistleblower retaliation protections. The company filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that because Somers had not make his…

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