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Left to right: Clayton Halunen, Steven Premo, Adam Hansen, Matthew Frank and Steven Andrew Smith.
Left to right: Clayton Halunen, Steven Premo, Adam Hansen, Matthew Frank and Steven Andrew Smith.

Attorneys of the Year: Friedlander Legal Team

Clayton Halunen and Steven Andrew Smith are Circle of Excellence Attorneys of the Year.

Matthew Frank, Clayton Halunen and Steven Andrew Smith are Circle of Excellence Attorneys of the Year.

Thanks to a case decided by the Minnesota Supreme Court over the summer, whistleblowers can now be heard loud and clear.

The court ruled unanimously in favor of James Friedlander, an employee at Edwards Lifesciences. Friedlander was fired after objecting to the company’s unlawful scheme of deceptive trade practices.

He sued under the Whistleblower Act, alleging that his termination was retaliatory. Edwards argued that his reports of illegal conduct were not made in good faith because the company knew about the purportedly illegal conduct before Friedlander expressed his opposition.

Friedlander argued that the Minnesota Legislature had done away with the court’s prior interpretations of “good faith” and said a report is made in good faith as long as it is made not knowing that it is false or in reckless disregard of the truth. The case went to the Minnesota Supreme Court as a certified question. It agreed with Friedlander.

“We have clear direction from our Supreme Court that will protect whistleblower’s rights,” said plaintiff’s attorney Clayton Halunen of Halunen Law.

Other members of the Friedlander legal team were Steven Premo of Halunen Law; Steven Andrew Smith and Matthew Frank of Nichols Kaster; and Adam Hansen of Apollo Law.

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