Appeals Court Dismisses Challenge To SEC Resource Extraction Rules

In 2012 ,the SEC adopted final rules requiring public companies engaged in certain oil and gas activities to disclose payments made to domestic and foreign governments as required by the Dodd-Frank Act.  The rules were promptly challenged by the American Petroleum Institute, the Chamber of Commerce and others in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.  The Court of Appeals recently dismissed the case for lack of jurisdiction, and now the case will proceed in the District Court.

The Appeals Court dismissed the case because:

  • Section 25(a) of the Exchange Act provides for appellate jurisdiction for a person aggrieved of final SEC orders only and does not provide jurisdiction for challenges to SEC rules.
  • The provision of the Dodd-Frank Act which required the SEC to adopt the resource extraction rules is not specifically enumerated in Section 25(b) of the Exchange Act which grants appellate jurisdiction to review specifically defined rules.

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