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Argument preview: Justices to tackle important agency-deference question

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this post ran on January 28, 2019, as an introduction to this blog’s symposium on Kisor v. Wilkie, as well as at Howe on the Court, where it was originally published. Next week the Supreme Court will hear oral argument in Kisor v. Wilkie, which arises from a dispute over benefits for a Marine who served in the Vietnam War. Although it may sound dry, the case could be one of the most consequential of the term, because the justices will decide whether to over...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Court, Marines, Va, Chevron, Robbins, Thomas, Antonin Scalia, APA, John Roberts, Scalia, Howe, Clarence Thomas


Wednesday round-up

The justices will hear argument in one case this morning: Flowers v. Mississippi, which asks whether a prosecutor’s repeated use of peremptory challenges to remove black people from the jury pool violated the Constitution. Amy Howe previewed the case for this blog, in a post that was first published at Howe on the Court. Cecilia Bruni and Brady Plastaras have a preview at Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute. At AP, Jeff Amy and Mark Sherman report that “[t]he state, defending the co...
Tags: New York, Mississippi, Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Oregon, Court, America, Georgia, Bloomberg, Ap, Atlantic, United States, Hawaii, Liberty, New York Times


Physical-Realm: The Federal Circuit’s New Machine-or-Transformation

by Dennis Crouch In Bilski v. Kappos, the Supreme Court issued three separate opinions — although all the justices agreed that physicality — machine-or-transformation — offers at least an important clue for deciding the issue. Five Justice majority opinion: “The machine-or-transformation test is not the sole test for deciding whether an invention is a patent-eligible ‘process.’ . . . [Rather, it is] just an important and useful clue.” Four Justice minority opinion: Arguing that a “business me...
Tags: Justice, Supreme Court, Law, Court, United States, Patent, Fed, Microsoft Corp, Federal Circuit, Fed Cir, Vanda, Bilski, Capital One Bank, Intellectual Ventures I LLC, Thales Visionix Inc, McRO


Argument preview: Justices to tackle partisan gerrymandering … again

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this post ran on February 4, 2019, as an introduction to this blog’s symposium on Rucho v. Common Cause and Lamone v. Benisek, as well as at Howe on the Court, where it was originally published. Every 10 years, the federal government conducts a census. The states then use the data from the census to draw new maps for their state legislatures and federal congressional districts. The maps often take politics into account – for example, to protect incumbents. Bu...
Tags: Featured, Maryland, Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Court, Pennsylvania, United States, Wisconsin, Party, North Carolina, John Delaney, Charlotte, Raleigh, John Roberts, Roberts


Federal judge pens extraordinary and compelling order requesting US Attorney to vacate old stacked 924(c) conviction in extraordinary and compelling case

I learned last night of a remarkable new four-page order entered in US v. Marks, No. 03-CR-6033 (WDNY March 14, 2019) (available for download below).  Chad Marks' case has been followed for years by clemency advocates like Amy Povah, and this CAN-DO profile page has lots of background materials about his case, his requests for clemency, and all the positive work he has done since being sentenced many years ago to 40 mandatory prison years due to stacking § 924(c) firearm charges.  As informed re...
Tags: Law, Congress, Court, US, United States, Gleeson, DKT, Marks, Holloway, Larimer, Eastern District of New York, John Gleeson, Douglas A Berman, David Larimer, Bureau of Prison, Amy Povah


Tuesday round-up

Today the justices will hear oral argument in Cochise Consultancy v. United States, ex rel. Hunt, which asks whether the “discovery” exception to False Claims Act statute of limitations applies to private parties in cases in which the government has not intervened. David Engstrom had this blog’s preview. Lauren Devendorf and Tyler Schmitt preview the case at Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute. Subscript Law provides a graphic explainer. [Disclosure: Goldstein & Russell, P.C., whose...
Tags: Mississippi, Supreme Court, Law, Washington Post, Washington, Court, Bloomberg, Atlantic, Gop, United States, New York Times, Kansas, Beltway, Louisiana, Usa Today, Flowers


Justices grant four new cases (Corrected)

The Supreme Court issued orders from last week’s private conference. The justices added four new cases to their docket for next term and asked the U.S. solicitor general to weigh in on two more cases. The justices also rejected an appeal from a Georgia death-row inmate who alleges that one member of the jury that convicted him was biased against the inmate because of his race. In Kansas v. Garcia, the justices will review a ruling by the Kansas Supreme Court that reversed the convictions of Rami...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Washington, Virginia, Court, Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, United States, Social Security, New Orleans, Kansas, Louisiana, Corrections


Justices grant four new cases

The Supreme Court issued orders from last week’s private conference. The justices added four new cases to their docket for next term and asked the U.S. solicitor general to weigh in on two more cases. The justices also rejected an appeal from a Georgia death-row inmate who alleges that one member of the jury that convicted him was biased against the inmate because of his race. In Kansas v. Garcia, the justices will review a ruling by the Kansas Supreme Court that reversed the convictions of Rami...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Washington, Virginia, Court, Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, United States, Social Security, New Orleans, Kansas, Louisiana, Patterson


One Bad Day Can Adversely Affect A Career

The Delaware Supreme Court has ordered a 15-month suspension of an attorney retroactive to the date of his interim suspension. The Court has considered the matter carefully. Vavala admitted the ethical violations alleged in the ODC’s petition against him. The... [Author: Legal Profession Prof]
Tags: Law, Court, Delaware Supreme Court, ODC, Legal Profession Prof, Bar Discipline & Process, Vavala


"In Clinton v Jones, the United States Supreme Court held that separation of powers concerns did not preclude a federal lawsuit against a sitting President of the United States..."

"... based on unofficial acts allegedly committed by him before he assumed office. The Court expressly cautioned in that decision that different concerns, including the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution, might influence the result if such a case were brought against the President in state court. However, the Court did not rule that such a suit could or could not proceed. This matter gives us an opportunity to squarely address the question.... [S]ubjecting the President to a stat...
Tags: New York, Maryland, Law, Court, United States, Bill Clinton, Ny, Separation of Powers, Jones, Clinton, Donald J Trump, McCulloch, Executive Power, Ann Althouse, Federalism, Trump troubles


Figuring Out Where to Go With a Complaint: Different Answers in Academia and Unionized Workplaces

A recent Ontario Court of Appeal case reaffirmed that for certain purposes, academic complaints are properly brought to court, rather than addressed in university internal processes. In Lam v. University of Western Ontario, 2019 ONCA 82, the Ontario Court of Appeal allowed Lam’s appeal from the decision of a motions judge that his complaint should have been brought as a complaint to the university and not as a claim for damages in superior court. The test for determining where to bring the compl...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Court, University, Commission, Court of appeal, Academia, Weber, Brown, Supreme Court of Canada, Lam, Ontario Court of Appeal, Ontario Superior Court of Justice, NRHA, Case Comment, Ontario Hydro


Supreme Court Requires Completed Copyright Registration Before Filing Suit–Fourth Estate Public Benefit v. Wall-Street (Guest Blog Post)

Guest Blog Post by Tyler Ochoa On March 4, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Fourth Estate Public Benefit Corp. v. Wall-Street.com, LLC, No. 17-571, 139 S.Ct. ____, 2019 U.S. LEXIS 1730.  The case involved the interpretation of section 411(a) of the Copyright Act, which provides:  “no civil action for infringement of the copyright in any United States work shall be instituted until preregistration or registration of the copyright claim has been made in accordance with this title.”  The questi...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Court, Copyright, United States, Library Of Congress, Oracle, Slip, Beard, Copyright Office, U S Supreme Court, Roberts, Congressional, Ginsburg, Ninth Circuit


Tom Goldstein unpacks stay in Louisiana abortion case

In this week’s episode of SCOTUStalk, Tom Goldstein joins Amy Howe of Howe on the Court to unpack the Supreme Court’s recent order in June Medical Services v. Gee, in which a divided court blocked a Louisiana law that would require abortion providers to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals from going into effect pending appeal. The post Tom Goldstein unpacks stay in Louisiana abortion case appeared first on SCOTUSblog.
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Court, Louisiana, Howe, Amy Howe, Tom Goldstein, Medical Services, SCOTUStalk


Friday round-up

Amy Howe reports for this blog, in a post that first appeared at Howe on the Court, that yesterday Justices Samuel Alito and Elena Kagan testified about the Supreme Court’s budget at a congressional hearing, “field[ing] questions about cameras in the courtroom, law clerk diversity, partisan attacks on the judiciary, and the #MeToo movement.” Jess Bravin reports for that, according to Kagan, “Chief Justice John Roberts is weighing whether to create a code of conduct for members of the Supreme C...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Washington Post, Court, Indiana, Round-up, John Roberts, Jeffrey Toobin, Cato Institute, Robert Barnes, Howe, Jess Bravin, Alito, Elena Kagan, Kagan, Heritage Foundation


Court allows blockchain platform to send subpoena seeking info about hacker

Plaintiff provides a blockchain asset trading platform and claims that a hacker broke in and transferred 330,000 Tether and 100 Ether to a Bittrex account. Though Bittrex told plaintiff it had identified the relevant Bittrex account holder, it would not disclose the identity to plaintiff without a court order. So plaintiff filed suit against the John Doe hacker for conversion, violation of the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and under Washington state law. Since it could not serve the comp...
Tags: Law, Washington, Court, Anonymity, DOE, Blockchain, Fed, John Doe, Ninth Circuit, Electronic Discovery, Bittrex, Columbia Ins Co, ZG TOP Technology Co Ltd


Guest Post on Patent Eligibility and Investment: A Survey

Guest Post by David O. Taylor, Associate Professor of Law at SMU Dedman School of Law. Professor Taylor recently drafted an article summarizing the results of a survey of venture capitalists and private equity investors. The survey explores how the Supreme Court’s recent patent eligibility cases have influenced firm decisions to invest in companies developing technology. -Jason Numerous inventors, lawyers, companies, industry groups, professors, and judges have decried the Supreme Court’s recent...
Tags: Supreme Court, Microsoft, Law, Congress, Court, United States, Taylor, Patent, Clark, Alice Corp, American Intellectual Property Law Association, Prometheus Laboratories Inc, CLS Bank, Mayo Collaborative Services, Intellectual Property Owners Association, SMU Dedman School


Symposium: In the Louisiana abortion case, maybe the best defense is a good offense

Michael C. Dorf is the Robert S. Stevens Professor of Law at Cornell University. He blogs at  dorfonlaw.org . Chief Justice John Roberts surprised some observers when he joined his four more liberal colleagues to grant a stay of the decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit in . The stay blocked Louisiana’s law requiring doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. The petitioners argued that the Louisiana law was substantially similar to the Tex...
Tags: Health, Texas, Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Senate, Court, Mitch McConnell, Nebraska, Knox, Louisiana, SEIU, Cornell University, Trump, Antonin Scalia, John Roberts


Wednesday round-up

At The Daily Caller, Kevin Daley reports that “Christian baker Jack Phillips and the Colorado Civil Rights Commission … have resolved a legal dispute that set Phillips’ religious beliefs against the state’s public accommodations law”; the settlement “provides that the Commission will close an ongoing anti-discrimination probe of Phillips’s Masterpiece Cakeshop,” the subject of a high-profile Supreme Court case last term, “if Phillips withdraws a federal lawsuit alleging state officials were subj...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Court, America, United States, New Jersey, Commission, North Carolina, Chevron, Economist, American Legion, Round-up, Copyright Office, Mark Joseph Stern, Phillips, International Finance Corporation


Tuesday round-up

Yesterday the court released orders from Friday’s conference, adding a patent case to its docket for next term and declining to review two related cases involving public funding of religious institutions. Amy Howe covers the order list for this blog, in a post that first appeared at Howe on the Court. At Jurist, Erin McCarthy Holliday covers the patent case, Iancu v. NantKwest, which asks whether a federal law allowing a patent applicant to seek review of a patent denial in district court but re...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Washington Post, Wall Street, Court, Bloomberg, Ap, Cnn, House, New York Times, New Jersey, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Los Angeles Times, Round-up, Thomas, Copyright Office


Justices add patent-fees case to next term’s docket

This morning the Supreme Court issued orders from last week’s conference, adding a new case involving fees in patent cases to its docket. Under federal law, an unsuccessful patent applicant who wants a court to review the denial of his patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has two options. He can go to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which will review the denial based on the same record that the USPTO used. Or he can go to federal district court, which will let him ad...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Court, Indiana, Missouri, Lgbtq, U S Supreme Court, Morristown, Howe, New Jersey Supreme Court, U S Patent and Trademark Office, Trinity Lutheran Church, Samuel Alito, Kavanaugh, U S Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit


Third Circuit panel rules sex offenders subject to registration laws in Pennsylvania are "in custody" for habeas purposes

Last week, a unanimous panel of the Third Circuit issued what seems to be a groundbreaking ruling about habeas jurisdiction. In Piasecki v. Court of Common Pleas, No. 16-4175 (3d Cir. Feb 27, 2019) (available here), the Third Circuit distinguished a variety of contrary rulings from other circuits to hold that a registered sex offender in Pennsylvania is “in custody” for purposes of having jurisdiction to bring a habeas corpus challenge. Here is how the opinion starts and ends: We are asked to d...
Tags: Law, Court, Pennsylvania, District Court, Third Circuit, SORNA, Douglas A Berman, Piasecki, In Piasecki


Implied License for Differential Treatment

The interaction between law enforcement and notions of privacy in the security of our homes has always been a special focus of s. 8 Charter rights. The treatment of the home as a special place in the law was described by Justice Binnie in R. v. Tessling as a nuanced hierarchy protecting privacy of places, used to evaluate the reasonableness of a person’s expectation of privacy. This privacy interest is not absolute, and although the “dwelling house” enjoys the greatest expectation of privacy, th...
Tags: Law, Court, Toronto, Evans, Court of appeal, Grant, Dixon, Supreme Court of Canada, Justice Issues, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Ontario Government, Ontario Court of Appeal in R, Binnie, Lauwers, Tessling, Akinson Housing Co


Constitutional law roundup

You don’t need to be a religious believer to think the Supreme Court should uphold the continued display of the Bladensburg war memorial cross [George Will/syndicated, ] Cato filed a brief in the case [Ilya Shapiro, Trevor Burrus, Patrick Moran, and Michael Finch on The American Legion v. American Humanist Association] “The Second Amendment In The New Supreme Court” [Federalist Society conference with Renee Lerner, Stephen Halbrook, Mark W. Smith, and others; Halbrook on the Court’s decision...
Tags: Taxes, Guns, Supreme Court, Law, Oregon, Court, Uncategorized, Constitutional Law, Religious Liberty, Eugene Volokh, George Will, Bladensburg, O'Keeffe, American Humanist Association, The American Legion, Ilya Shapiro


SCOTUStalk: Justices confront constitutional “hot mess” in Peace Cross case

We are delighted to introduce the first episode of our new podcast, SCOTUStalk. Hosted by SCOTUSblog contributors, the podcast will take a “plain English” look at events and topics relating to the Supreme Court. This week, NPR’s Nina Totenberg joins Amy Howe, of Howe on the Court, for a look back at Wednesday’s oral argument in American Legion v. American Humanist Association, the challenge to the constitutionality of a 40-foot-tall, 93-year-old cross that stands on a traffic median in the Washi...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Washington, Court, Npr, American Legion, Howe, Nina Totenberg, Amy Howe, American Humanist Association


Expenses: "Uninsured" Portion of Children Medical Expenses - Hsa/High Deductible Health Plan

My question involves a child custody case from the State of: Texas I am non custodial parent. 3 kids Court order is, I pay cash medical support, custodial parent was to maintain health insurance. 50/50 shared on unreimbursed health care expenses. Facts: Custodial parent maintained health care through her employer, preferred plan since kids born. After divorce, 1 year later (Jan 2019) she renewed her health plan through her employer but chose a high deductible plan. Her employer gave her a $1...
Tags: Texas, Law, Court, Child Custody, Support And Visitation, HSA


Friday round-up

At Take Care, Nelson Tebbe and Micah Schwartzman worry that “some liberal justices might refuse to call out th[e] egregious violation of Establishment Clause principles in The American Legion v. American Humanist Association, a challenge to a World War I memorial shaped like a cross on public property, “[i]n an effort to gain concessions or to limit the possible damage that this case might do to decades of Establishment Clause precedent.” Additional commentary comes from Andrew Seidel at Rewire....
Tags: Justice, Supreme Court, Law, Congress, Oregon, Politico, Court, Alabama, Los Angeles, Bloomberg, United States, Idaho, Ford, Liberty, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Madison


Opinion analysis: Defense lawyer’s refusal to file requested appeal constitutes ineffective assistance, despite defendant’s appeal waiver

When a defense lawyer decides not to file an appeal of a guilty plea despite his client’s request, he renders ineffective assistance of counsel, even if the client waived his right to appeal in the plea agreement, the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday in Garza v. Idaho. In a 6-3 majority opinion, Justice Sonia Sotomayor held that the presence of an appeal waiver did not render the Supreme Court’s 2000 decision in Roe v. Flores-Ortega inapplicable, as the Idaho Supreme Court had ruled below. Flores-Ort...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Court, United States, Idaho, Thomas, Sonia Sotomayor, The Supreme Court, Idaho Supreme Court, Sotomayor, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Garza, Gorsuch, Merits Cases


Book Review: The Judicial Role in a Diverse Federation: Lessons From the Supreme Court of Canada

Several times each month, we are pleased to republish a recent book review from the Canadian Law Library Review (CLLR). CLLR is the official journal of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL/ACBD), and its reviews cover both practice-oriented and academic publications related to the law. The Judicial Role in a Diverse Federation: Lessons from the Supreme Court of Canada. By Robert Schertzer. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2016. ix, 338 p. Includes tables, bibliography, and index....
Tags: UK, Law, Court, Book Reviews, US, Canada, University of Toronto, Supreme Court of Canada, SCC, University of Toronto Press, Canadian Law Library Review, Supreme Court of Canada SCC, Bennett Jones, Canadian Association of Law Libraries, Schertzer, Kim Clarke


SCOTUS, ruling 6-3, refuses to let appeal waivers impact ineffectiveness claims when attorney improperly fails to appeal

The Supreme Court this morning handed down an opinion in Garza v. Idaho, No. 17-1026 (S. Ct. Feb. 27, 2019) (available here), a case concerning the distinctive Sixth Amendment jurisprudence addressing whether defense counsel has been constitutionally deficient when failing to appeal upon a defendant's instructions.  The ruling in the case is 6-3, with Justice Sotomayor delivering the opinion of the Court, which was joined by the Chief Justice as well as Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, Kagan and Kavan...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Court, Idaho, Alito, Sotomayor, Kavanaugh, Garza, Gorsuch, Douglas A Berman, Justice Thomas, Flores Ortega, Ginsburg Breyer Kagan, Petitioner Gilberto Garza


SCOTUS, ruling 5-3, clarifies execution competency standards and remands in Madison v. Alabama

The Supreme Court this morning handed down an opinion in Madison v. Alabama, 17-7505 (S. Ct. Feb. 27, 2019) (available here), a case concerning the distinctive Eighth Amendment jurisprudence addressing whether a defendant is competent to be executed.  The ruling in the case is 5-3, as Justice Kavanaugh had not yet joined the Court at the time the case was argued.  Justice Kagan delivered the opinion of the Court, which was joined by the Chief Justice as well as Justices Ginsburg, Breyer and Soto...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Court, Alabama, San Francisco, Madison, Thomas, Alito, Sotomayor, Kagan, Sheehan, Osborn, Visa Inc, Kavanaugh, Petitioner, Gorsuch



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