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Rating:Fido Bites Back in IRA Guarantee Case Not Rated 4.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Fido Bites Back in IRA Guarantee Case

Reported by Erin Kello

Fidelity's lawyers have fired their opening volley in the case against the company by Washington resident Patricia Whitney.

The case centers around Fidelity's "Customer Protection Guarantee," which Whitney claims entitles her to recoup the money stolen from her IRA by her then husband.

In a document filed January 14, Fidelity's lawyers rebut each and every point made in Whitney's complaint. Fidelity's lawyers argue that there isn't enough information to determine whether Whitney sufficiently protected her PIN and account numbers from her husband.

Sought for further comment, Fidelity spokesperson Vin Loporchio told The MFWire: "While we are not going to comment on the details of this ongoing legal matter. We can tell you that we believe the suit is without merit. We intend to defend against the suit vigorously. As with many guarantees, there are some reasonable conditions on coverage. These conditions are described on our website."

Fidelity's "Customer Protection Guarantee" states that consumers do have a responsibility to protect their own accounts by safeguarding PIN numbers, securing their computers, and actively monitoring their accounts.

If Whitney successfully sues in this case it may bring a flood of lawsuits down upon fund firms that offer guarantees in their IRA accounts, leading to massive payouts. Or fund companies would have to stop offering the guarantee altogether.  

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