Business

Court affirms whistleblower protections in Fidelity case

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that whistleblower protections in a federal law passed in response to the Enron financial scandal apply to employees of publicly traded companies and contractors hired by the companies.

The justices voted 6 to 3 in favor of two former employees of companies that administer the Fidelity family of mutual funds. The workers claimed they faced retaliation after they reported allegations of fraud affecting Fidelity funds.

Advertisement

The case involved the reach of a provision of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, passed in 2002 in response to the Enron scandal, which protects whistleblower activity. The measure was intended to protect people who expose the kind of corporate misdeeds that arose at Enron.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said that the law ‘‘shelters employees of private contractors that serve public companies, just as it shelters the public companies’ own employees.’’

Get Talking Points in your inbox:
An afternoon recap of the day’s most important business news, delivered weekdays.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Samuel Alito, and Anthony Kennedy dissented.

Sotomayor said the court’s decision gives the law a ‘‘stunning reach’’ and could potentially allow a baby sitter to bring a federal case against the family that employed him.

Jackie Hosang Lawson and Jonathan M. Zang complained of retaliation from the privately held parent company and subsidiary companies that run the Fidelity mutual funds.

Advertisement

Lawson resigned after complaining of harassment, and Zang was dismissed, and they both sued.

Loading comments...
Real journalists. Real journalism. Subscribe to The Boston Globe today.
You're reading  1 of 5 free articles.
Get UNLIMITED access for only 99¢ per week Subscribe Now >
You're reading1 of 5 free articles.Keep scrolling to see more articles recomended for you Subscribe now
We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles.
Continue reading by subscribing to Globe.com for just 99¢.
 Already a member? Log in Home
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com