This month, the Minnesota Supreme Court issued a unanimous, landmark decision expanding protections for employees who report legal violations to their employers. The Friedlander v. Edwards Lifesciences, LLC, et al., decision involves a straightforward interpretation of a statute and at first glance may seem unremarkable. The truth of the matter is, it’s a big deal. To fully understand the ruling’s impact let’s explore an example that may sound familiar:
Imagine you are a compliance officer at large bank. Your boss shares a plan with you involving the highest levels of the company, to add fake accounts and credit cards for bank customers without their knowledge or permission. Appalled, you object to this plan and call it fraudulent. Your boss laughs and fires you. You, in turn, sue the bank for wrongful termination.