Jottings By An Employer's Lawyer

Friday, March 21, 2003

Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Final Regulations

Although the Sarbanes-Oxley statute itself is not mentioned, the DOL has now issued its final rule, effective March 21, 2003, governing the investigation and processing of whistleblower claims under Sarbanes-Oxley. See today's Federal Register. The regulations refer to whistleblower claims brought under the Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century, but in passing Sarbanes-Oxley, Congress prescribed that rules and procedures under the Aviation Act, would also govern the administrative procedures for whistleblower complaints under Sarbanes-Oxley. The regulations will be codified at 29 C.F.R. Part 1979. One difference is that if the administrative procedures are not completed within 180 days of filing the complaint with OSHA, the Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower is permitted to file an action in federal court.

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