Willamette Law Online

( 249 summaries )

U.S. Supreme Court Certiorari Granted Updates

Kansas v. Carr, Jonathan

Criminal Procedure: Does the Eighth Amendment require a jury engaged in capital sentencing to be “affirmatively instructed” that mitigating circumstances “need not be proved beyond a reasonable doubt, or whether jury instructions, in context, that are clear that each individual juror must analyze and give weight to a mitigating circumstance satisfies the Eighth Amendment? Also, whether a trial court’s decision to not sever a sibling co-defendant’s sentencing phase from respondent’s violated the right to “individualized sentencing” under the Eighth Amendment and if severed, was not harmless error?

(Filing Date: 03-30-2015)

Kansas v. Gleason

Sentencing: Whether a capital-sentencing jury is required by the Eighth Amendment to be affirmatively instructed, as the Kansas Supreme Court held, that mitigating circumstances need not be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, or if the Eight Amendment is satisfied by merely providing instructions that make clear that every juror must weigh and assess mitigating circumstances.

(Filing Date: 03-30-2015)

Kansas v. Reginald Carr

Sentencing: Whether the Eight Amendment requires either severance of co-defendants' cases at sentencing or affirmative instructions to sentencing juries that mitigating circumstances need not be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

(Filing Date: 03-30-2015)

Montanile v. Board of Trustees of the National Elevator Industry Health Benefit Plan

Tort Law: Whether in a lawsuit under the Employee Retirement and Income Security Act of 1974, a fiduciary can recover an overpayment if the fiduciary did not identify a particular fund for the payment.

(Filing Date: 03-30-2015)

Alabama Legislative Black Caucus v. Alabama

Election Law: The redistribution of majority-minority voters into fewer districts is unconstitutional when it decreases the overall strength of voters within the state.

(Filing Date: 03-25-2015)

DIRECTV, Inc. v. Imburgia

Arbitration: Whether California state law forbids agreements that waive customer rights to bring a class action.

(Filing Date: 03-23-2015)

Montgomery v. Louisiana

Juvenile Law: Whether a ban on life sentences without possibility of parole to minors applies retroactively to sentences before the Supreme Court's 2012 landmark decision.

(Filing Date: 03-23-2015)

Hurst v. Florida

Constitutional Law: Whether Florida's death sentencing scheme violates the Sixth Amendment or the Eighth Amendment in light of this Court's decision in Ring v. Arizona, 536 U.S. 584 (2002).

(Filing Date: 03-09-2015)

Kansas v. Nebraska et. al

Water Rights: Whether Nebraska violated 1943 Congressional agreement and 2003 settlement on the apportionment of waters of the Republican River between Kansas, Nebraska, and Colorado and if so, what remedy is required.

(Filing Date: 03-09-2015)

Hawkins v. Community Bank of Raymore

Consumer Credit: Whether spousal guarantors have standing to bring a claim under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), and whether the Federal Reserve Board can include spousal guarantors as “applicants” to avoid discrimination against married women.

(Filing Date: 03-02-2015)

Ocasio v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether the federal statute forbidding extortion requires a conspiracy to commit extortion to target a victim outside the conspiracy.

(Filing Date: 03-02-2015)

Glossip v. Gross

Constitutional Law: Whether Oklahoma's prisoner execution protocols violate the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

(Filing Date: 01-23-2015)

OBB Personenverkehr AG v. Sachs

Sovereign Immunity: (1) Whether common law agency, the definitions in Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, 28 USC 1602 (FSIA), or the factors set out in First National City Bank v. Banco Para el Comercio Exterior de Cuba should determine when an entity is an “agent” of a foreign state under the commercial-activity exception of FSIA; and (2) whether under the commercial-activity exception of the FSIA, a tort claim in connection with travel outside of the United States arises from allegedly tortuous conduct which occurred outside of the United States; or the from preceding sale of the ticket within the United States.

(Filing Date: 01-23-2015)

Horne v. Department of Agriculture

Constitutional Law: (1) Whether the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment applies only to real property and not personal property; (2) whether government may avoid paying just compensation for a physical taking of property by reserving a contingent interest in a portion of the value of the property to the property owner; and (3) whether the California raisin marketing order is a per se taking that requires just compensation.

(Filing Date: 01-16-2015)

Kingsley v. Hendrickson

Civil Rights § 1983: Whether a pretrial detainee's 42 U.S.C. § 1983 excessive force claim requires a showing that the force used by the state actor was objectively unreasonable and that the use of force was deliberate.

(Filing Date: 01-16-2015)

Mata v. Holder

Immigration: Whether the Fifth Circuit erred in determining that it had no jurisdiction to review a petitioner's request that the Board of Immigration Appeals equitably toll a deadline on his motion to reopen due to ineffective assistance of counsel under 8 C.F.R. § 1003.2(c)(2).

(Filing Date: 01-16-2015)

McFadden v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether the government must prove a defendant knew a substance was a controlled substance before convicting the defendant for distribution of a controlled substance.

(Filing Date: 01-16-2015)

Obgerfell, et al. v. Hodges, et al.

Constitutional Law: Whether the Fourteenth Amendment requires a state to license a marriage between two people of the same sex, and whether the Fourteenth Amendment requires a state to recognize a same sex marriage when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-state.

(Filing Date: 01-16-2015)

Bullard v. Hyde Park Savings Bank

Bankruptcy Law: Whether a bankruptcy court's denial of a reorganization plan is a final order that may be appealed.

(Filing Date: 12-12-2014)

Harris v. Viegelahn

Bankruptcy Law: Whether undistributed funds held by a Chapter 13 trustee after conversion to Chapter 7 should be returned to the debtor or given to creditors.

(Filing Date: 12-12-2014)

Kimble v. Marvel Enterprises, Inc.

Patents: Whether a rule of reason analysis should replace current per se ban on post-expiration patent royalty collection.

(Filing Date: 12-12-2014)

Toca v. Louisiana

Sentencing: (1) Whether the rule announced in Miller v. Alabama that states that a mandatory life sentence without parole for those under 18 years of age violates the 8th Amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment applies retroactively, and (2) Whether a federal question is raised by a claim that a state court failed to find a Teague exception.

(Filing Date: 12-12-2014)

Brumfield v. Cain

Criminal Law: Whether (1) exclusive reliance on findings made during the penalty phase of a trial is an unreasonable determination of facts under 28 U.S.C. § 2254(d) for making an Atkins analysis; and (2) whether a state's denial of resources for post-trial evidentiary examinations denies a defendant the "opportunity to be heard" and to mount an adequate defense.

(Filing Date: 12-05-2014)

Commil USA, LLC v. Cisco Systems, Inc.

Patents: Whether it was error for the Federal Circuit to hold that it is a defense to induced infringement under 35 U.S.C. 271(b) that a defendant thought a patent was invalid.

(Filing Date: 12-05-2014)

Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc.

First Amendment: (1) Whether state issued license plates, and the messages on them, are government speech, and thus immune from viewpoint neutrality; and (2) whether Sons of Confederate Veterans license plates were discriminated against on the basis of viewpoint when the state rejected them, even though the confederacy was not portrayed negatively.

(Filing Date: 12-05-2014)

City and County of San Francisco v. Sheehan

Disability Law: (1) Whether police officers must make "reasonable accommodations" under the American with Disabilities Act when they are making an arrest of violent armed individual; and (2) whether entry into a residence, even though there is a clear exception to the warrant requirement can still be unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment.

(Filing Date: 11-25-2014)

Michigan v. EPA; consolidated with Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA; National Mining Association v. EPA

Environmental Law: Whether it was unreasonable for the Environmental Protection Agency ("EPA") refused to consider costs in deciding if it is "appropriate" to regulate hazardous air pollutants emitted by electric utilities.

(Filing Date: 11-25-2014)

Bank of America, N.A. v. Caulkett; consolidated with Bank of America, N.A. v. Toledo-Cardona

Bankruptcy Law: Whether under 506(d) of the Bankruptcy Code, can a Chapter 7 debtor “strip off” in the entirety, a junior mortgage’s lien if the outstanding debt that is owed to a senior lien-holder is more than the current value of the collateral?

(Filing Date: 11-17-2014)

Chen v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore, Maryland

Civil Procedure: Whether, under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(m), a district court has discretion to extend the time for service of process absent a showing of good cause.

(Filing Date: 11-07-2014)

King v. Burwell

Administrative Law: Whether the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) creates rule-making authority permitting the IRS to grant tax credit subsidies to taxpayers who have purchased health insurance plans through health insurance exchanges established by either states or the federal government.

(Filing Date: 11-07-2014)

City of Los Angeles v. Patel

Constitutional Law: Whether statutes or ordinances authorizing warrantless searches of hotel registries violate the Fourth Amendment, and whether a hotel has an expectation of privacy in their guest registry under the Fourth Amendment.

(Filing Date: 10-20-2014)

Davis v. Ayala

Constitutional Law: Whether a federal constitutional error occurred as the result of excluding Petitioner from ex parte Batson proceedings and if the error was harmless, and whether the court correctly applied the Brecht v. Abrahamson standard.

(Filing Date: 10-20-2014)

Henderson v. United States

Property Law: Whether federal prohibition of felons possessing firearms under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g) completely terminates an individual’s firearm ownership right when that individual is convicted of felony.

(Filing Date: 10-20-2014)

Arizona State Legislature v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission

Election Law: 1) Can a state use a commission to create congressional districts without running afoul of the Elections Clause of the U.S. Constitution and 2 U.S.C. §2a(c)? 2) Does a state legislature have standing to bring this type of suit?

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Armstrong v. Exceptional Child Center, Inc.

Constitutional Law: Whether Medicaid providers have a right to enforce 42 U.S.C. § 1396a(a)(30)(A) under the Supremacy Clause where Congress did not give that right.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Baker Botts, L.L.P. v. ASARCO, L.L.C.

Bankruptcy Law: Whether Bankruptcy Code §330(a) allows judges discretion in awarding attorneys compensation in litigation dealing with a fee application.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Coleman-Bey v. Tollefson

Civil Procedure: Whether a dismissal that is not final, either due pending appellate review or because the time period to appeal has not run, is counted when determining if 28 U.S.C. § 1915(g) applies to bar civil actions or appeals by prisoners who have already had three or more civil actions or appeals dismissed.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc.

Employment Law: Whether it is a violation of Title VII for refusing to hire an applicant or for terminating an employee based on a religious practice that require accommodations.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Kerry v. Din

Immigration: Whether the spouse of a non-citizen has a protected liberty interest in the denial of a visa to the non-citizen and whether a person can challenge the denial or a visa and require the government to list specific reasons for denial.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Ohio v. Clark

Evidence: (1) Whether individuals acting under mandatory reporting statutes become law enforcement agents under the Confrontation Clause; and (2) whether non-emergency hearsay statements from minor children to such individuals are testimonial statements under the Confrontation Clause.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Rodriguez v. United States

Criminal Procedure: Whether conducting a canine sniff without reasonable suspicion at the conclusion of a lawful traffic stop is a "de minimis" intrusion on personal liberty and is thus lawful under the Fourth Amendment.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc.

Civil Rights § 1983: Whether disparate-impact claims are allowed under the Fair Housing Act

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Tibble v. Edison International

Administrative Law: Whether the statute of limitations immunizes ERISA plan fiduciaries from retaining imprudent investments when the investments were first included in the plan more than six years ago, and whether Firestone deference applies in fiduciary breach actions when a fiduciary violates the terms of a governing plan document.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Williams-Yulee v. The Florida Bar

Constitutional Law: Whether a rule of judicial conduct that prohibits judicial candidates from personally soliciting campaign funds violates the First Amendment.

(Filing Date: 10-02-2014)

Alabama Department of Revenue v. CSX Transportation Inc.

Tax Law: Whether a state commits discrimination when it requires industrial and commercial businesses, including rail carriers, to pay sales-and-use-tax, but exempts rail carriers’ competitors from the tax, and whether other aspects of the state’s taxation should be considered in addition to the tax provision challenged.

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc.

Civil Procedure: Whether the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board's findings preclude the relitigation of those same issues in subsequent litigation.

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

Direct Marketing Association v. Brohl

Tax Law: Whether the Tax Injunction Act precludes federal court jurisdiction over issues dealing with "secondary aspects of state tax administration."

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

Kellogg Brown & Root Services, Inc. v. United States ex rel. Carter

Civil Procedure: Whether 18 U.S.C. § 3287 applies to claims brought by private relators, and also leads to indefinite tolling; and whether the “first-to-file” bar in the False Claims Act is essentially a “one-case-at-a-time” rule.

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

Oneok, Inc. v. Learjet, Inc.

Preemption: Whether the Natural Gas Act, which defines Federal Energy Regulation Commission (“FERC”) jurisdiction over natural gas, preempts state antitrust claims arising from transactions beyond FERC jurisdiction.

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

Reed v. Gilbert

First Amendment: Whether a town's sign code, limiting the amount of time when a sign may be posted, violates the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment when the sign is used to announce religious services.

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

Wellness International Network, Ltd. v. Sharif

Bankruptcy Law: Whether a bankruptcy court has constitutional authority to enter a final order in a federal 11 U.S.C. § 541 action when there is also a state property law issue present because the action does not “stem from the bankruptcy itself,” and whether conduct of a party is enough to satisfy implied consent for purposes of Article III judicial power.

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc.

Employment Law: Whether, and in what circumstances, an employer that provides work accommodations to non-pregnant employees with work limitations must provide similar accommodations to pregnant employees who are "similar in their ability or inability to work."

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)

Gelboim v. Bank of America Corp.

Civil Procedure: Whether a final order renders a suit immediately appealable when that suit has been consolidated with other suits that have not concluded.

(Filing Date: 06-30-2014)

Mach Mining, LLC v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Employment Law: Whether, and to what extent, a court may enforce the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's mandatory duty to conciliate discrimination claims before filing suit.

(Filing Date: 06-30-2014)

Mellouli v. Holder

Immigration: Whether a drug paraphernalia conviction "relates to" a controlled substance within the meaning of 8 U.S.C. §1227(a)(2)(B)(i).

(Filing Date: 06-30-2014)

United States v. June

Civil Procedure: Whether equitable tolling of the Federal Tort Claims Act’s two-year time limit for administration claims with the appropriate agency is permitted.

(Filing Date: 06-30-2014)

United States v. Wong

Tort Law: Whether 28 U.S.C. § 2401(b) of the Federal Tort Claims Act is a “jurisdictional” statute and entitled to presumptions of equitable tolling.

(Filing Date: 06-30-2014)

Department of Transportation v. Association of American Railroads

Constitutional Law: Whether Amtrak is a private entity for purposes of determining whether Congress may delegate legislative authority to Amtrak, jointly with the Federal Railroad Administration, to create rules used in Surface Transportation Board adjudications.

(Filing Date: 06-23-2014)

Hana Financial, Inc. v. Hana Bank, et

Trademarks: Whether trademark priority under the tacking doctrine should be considered a matter of fact or a matter of law.

(Filing Date: 06-23-2014)

Whitfield v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether "forced accompaniment" during a bank robbery must be substantial in order to trigger the increased penalty under 18 U.S.C. § 2113(e).

(Filing Date: 06-23-2014)

Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Association; Nickols v. Mortgage Bankers Association

Administrative Law: Whether agencies must submit significant changes to a definitive agency interpretation to the public under the notice and comment requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act.

(Filing Date: 06-16-2014)

US v. Elonis

First Amendment: Whether, consistent with the First Amendment and Virginia v. Black, conviction of threatening another person requires proof of the Petitioner’s subjective intent to threaten or whether it is enough to show that a “reasonable person” would regard the statement as threatening.

(Filing Date: 06-16-2014)

Alabama Legislative Black Caucus v. Alabama; Alabama Democratic Conference v. Alabama

Constitutional Law: 1. Whether a state enacted redistricting plan violates one person, one vote if the plan results in large deviations for local legislative appointments that have governing power over counties. 2. Whether the legislative redistricting plans unconstitutionally classify African American voters by race because the plans intentionally draw district lines to preserve “the supermajority percentages produced when 2010 census data are applied to the 2001 majority-black districts.”

(Filing Date: 06-02-2014)

Comptroller v. Wynne

Tax Law: Whether the Constitution of the United States requires states to provide an income tax credit for income tax paid to other states

(Filing Date: 05-27-2014)

Department of Homeland Security v. MacLean

Qualified Immunity: Whether Congress intended the Whistleblower Protection Act to bar penalties when a government employee unilaterally exposes sensitive security information.

(Filing Date: 05-19-2014)

M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett

Employment Law: Whether under the Labor Management Relations Act (LMRA), courts should presume that silence as to the duration of retiree’s health-care benefits in collective bargaining agreements means the parties to the agreement intended those benefits to vest; or courts should require a statement that clearly states that the health care benefits survive the end of the agreement; or should there be at least some statement in the bargaining agreement that could support a ruling that the health care benefits should continue for life.

(Filing Date: 05-05-2014)

T-Mobile South, LLC v. City of Roswell

Administrative Law: Whether, according to the Telecommunications Act of 1996, a government may deny a telecommunication company's request "in writing" by sending a statement that contains no written explanation of its reasoning, or if there must be a written record for its reasoning and a written statement for the denial to qualify as being "in writing."

(Filing Date: 05-05-2014)

Jesinoski v. Countrywide Home Loans, Inc.

Contract Law: Whether notification within three years is sufficient to invoke the statutory right to rescind on a transaction under the Truth in Lending Act, 15 U.S.C. 1635(a), or whether a lawsuit must be filed within three years instead.

(Filing Date: 04-28-2014)

Yates v. United States

Evidence: Whether 18 U.S.C. § 1519 makes it an offense to destroy any tangible objects with the intent to impede an investigation or administrative matter, or whether the statute is limited to tangible objects related to records or documents.

(Filing Date: 04-28-2014)

Heien v. North Carolina

Criminal Procedure: Whether an officer's mistaken understanding of a statute can create the reasonable suspicion needed to justify a traffic stop.

(Filing Date: 04-21-2014)

Johnson v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether possession of a shotgun is a violent felony under the Armed Career Criminal Act.

(Filing Date: 04-21-2014)

Zivotofsky v. Kerry

Constitutional Law: Whether a federal statute directing the Secretary of State to list the birthplace of American citizens born in Jerusalem as Israel on the Consular Report of Birth Abroad and on the U.S. passport is unconstitutional because the statute "impermissibly infringes on the President's exercise of the recognition power reposing exclusively in him."

(Filing Date: 04-21-2014)

Dart Cherokee Basin, et al. v. Owens, Brandon W.

Standing: Whether a party seeking removal from state court to federal court is required to provide evidence of federal jurisdiction in the notice of removal?

(Filing Date: 04-07-2014)

Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. v. Sandoz, Inc., et al.

Patents: Whether the Federal Circuit erred in reviewing district court factual findings of construction of patent claims de novo and Rule 52(a) standard of review accepting findings of fact unless they are clearly erroneous applies to construction of patent claims.

(Filing Date: 03-31-2014)

Jennings v. Stephens

Habeas Corpus: Whether a habeas petitioner who prevails on an ineffective assistance of counsel of claim can raise assertions of deficient performance that were rejected by the trial court against the state's appeal if the petitioner has not filed a separate notice of appeal and certificate of appealability.

(Filing Date: 03-24-2014)

Public Employees’ Retirement System of Mississippi v. IndyMac MBS, Inc.

Civil Procedure: Whether the filing of a putative class action serves, under American Pipe & Construction Co. v. Utah, to satisfy the three year time limitation in § 13 of the Securities Act with respect to the claims of putative class members.

(Filing Date: 03-10-2014)

Holt v. Hobbs

Constitutional Law: Whether regulation of beard length by the Department of Corrections violates the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) or the First Amendment.

(Filing Date: 03-03-2014)

Integrity Staffing Solutions v. Busk, et al.

Labor Law: Whether the Portal-to-Portal Act of 1947 prohibits employees from receiving compensation for time spent in security screenings under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

(Filing Date: 03-03-2014)

North Carolina Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission

Administrative Law: Whether a state regulatory board may be treated as a private entity because the board is elected by market participants.

(Filing Date: 03-03-2014)

Omnicare, Inc. v. Laborers District Council Construction Industry Pension Fund

Civil Procedure: Whether a claim under §11 of the Securities Act of 1933, 15 U.S.C. §77k, must allege that a statement was subjectively or objectively false.

(Filing Date: 03-03-2014)


Evidence: Whether Federal Rule of Evidence 606(b) permits the use of statements made during jury deliberations to prove a juror lied during voir dire.

(Filing Date: 03-03-2014)

Air Wisconsin Airlines Corp. v. Hoeper

Qualified Immunity: Under the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA), immunity is not granted when airlines and their employees provide materially false disclosures about suspicious behavior.

(Filing Date: 01-27-2014)

Lane v. Franks

Employment Law: (1) Whether the government, under the First Amendment, may retaliate against a public employee for giving testimony which was not a part of the employee’s ordinary job responsibilities; and (2) whether damages are precluded in a qualified immunity claim.

(Filing Date: 01-17-2014)

Riley, David L. v. California

Constitutional Law: Whether the Fourth Amendment prohibits the warrantless search of cell phones.

(Filing Date: 01-17-2014)

American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. v. Aereo, Inc.

Copyright: Whether a company “publicly performs” a copyrighted television program when it retransmits a broadcast of that program to paid subscribers over the Internet.

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

CTS Corporation v. Waldburger

Preemption: Whether the preemption provision of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), 42 U.S.C. § 9658, applies to state statutes of repose as well as the state statutes of limitations.

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

Limelight Networks, Inc. V Akamai Technologies, Inc.

Patents: Whether 35 U.S.C. §271(b) allows a defendant to be held liable for patent infringement when no one committed a direct infringement.

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

Nautilus Inc. v. Biosig Instruments, Inc.

Patents: Whether a claim violates the statutory requirements for "particular and distinct patent claiming" when the Federal Circuit accepts ambiguous patent claims that have multiple reasonable interpretations, provided that the ambiguity is not “insoluble.”

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

Pom Wonderful LLC V. Coca-Cola Company

Standing: Whether the court of appeals erred in holding that a private party cannot bring a Lanham Act claim challenging a product label regulated under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus

Constitutional Law: (1) Whether, to challenge a speech-suppressive law, a party must prove that authorities would certainly and successfully prosecute or should the court presume that a credible threat of prosecution exists; and (2) whether the state laws proscribing “false” political speech are subject to pre-enforcement First Amendment review.

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

The Republic of Argentina v. NML Capital, Ltd.

Sovereign Immunity: Whether post-judgment discovery, when enforcing a judgment against a foreign state, can be ordered against assets held outside of the United State or is limited to assets that are executable under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA).

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

United States v. Clarke

Tax Law: Whether an unsupported allegation that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued a summons for an improper purpose entitles the summoned party to an evidentiary hearing to question IRS officials about their basis for issuing the summons.

(Filing Date: 01-10-2014)

Clark v, Rameker

Bankruptcy Law: Whether non-spousal inherited IRAs are exempt from creditors' claims as "retirement funds" under Section 522 of the Bankruptcy Code.

(Filing Date: 11-26-2013)

Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc.

Constitutional Law: (1) Whether The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (RFRA) permits a for-profit corporation to deny employees health coverage for contraceptives which the employees are otherwise entitled by federal law; and(2) whether application of the contraceptive-coverage mandate of the Affordable Care Act violates free exercise rights.

(Filing Date: 11-26-2013)

Wood v. Moss

First Amendment: (1) Whether viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment occurred when the Secret Service moved anti-Bush demonstrators, but not pro-Bush demonstrators; and (2) whether the Secret Service are entitled to qualified immunity.

(Filing Date: 11-26-2013)

Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc.

Civil Procedure: (1) Whether the holding in Basic Inc. v. Levinson should be overruled or modified and (2) whether class certification may be rebutted by providing evidence that the misrepresentations did not distort the actual stock value.

(Filing Date: 11-15-2013)

Plumhoff v. Rickard

Constitutional Law: (1) Whether the Sixth Circuit incorrectly denied qualified immunity to Petitioner and (2) whether the force used by Petitioner was reasonable.

(Filing Date: 11-15-2013)

Hall v. Florida

Constitutional Law: Whether the Florida scheme for identifying mentally retarded defendants in capital cases violates Atkins v. Virginia.

(Filing Date: 10-21-2013)

Robers v. United States

Civil Law: Whether the Mandatory Victims Restitution Act of 1996, 18 U.S.C. § 3663A limits the scope of restitution to the value difference of a mortgage and final sale price of real estate.

(Filing Date: 10-21-2013)

Abramski v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether a gun buyer’s intent to sell a firearm to another lawful buyer in the future is a fact “material to the lawfulness of the sale” of the firearm under 18 U.S.C. § 922(a)(6); and (2) whether a gun buyer’s intent to sell a firearm to another lawful buyer in the future is a piece of information “required . . . to be kept” by a federally licensed firearm dealer under Section 924(a)(1)(A).

(Filing Date: 10-15-2013)

Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency

Environmental Law: Whether the EPA correctly determined that permissible regulation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from new motor vehicles allowed permitting requirements under the Clean Air Act for stationary sources that emit GHG.

(Filing Date: 10-15-2013)

Harris v. Quinn

Constitutional Law: (1) Whether a collective bargaining agreement, which requires home-care personal assistants to pay a fee to union representatives, violates the First Amendment; and (2) whether the lower court erred in holding that the claims of providers in the Home Based Support Services Program are not ripe for judicial review.

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

Highmark Inc. v. Allcare Management Systems, Inc.

Attorney Fees: Whether permitting the award of attorney’s fees to the prevailing party, in exceptional cases under 35 U.S.C. § 285, based on a court's judgment that a suit is objectively baseless, is entitled to deference.

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

Marvin M. Brandt Irrevocable Trust v. United States

Property Law: Whether the United States held an implied reversionary interest in rights-of-way created by the General Railroad Right of Way Act in 1875 rights-of-way after the aforementioned lands were transferred to private ownership.

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

Navarette v. California

Criminal Procedure: Whether the Fourth Amendment requires a police officer, who receives an anonymous tip about a drunken or reckless driver, to corroborate the dangerous driving before stopping a vehicle.

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

Octane Fitness v. Icon Health and Fitness

Patents: Whether the Federal Circuit's two-step test for determining that a case is "exceptional" for the purpose of awarding attorney's fees to a prevailing accused infringer is an appropriate interpretation of 35 U.S.C. § 285.

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

Petrella v. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.

Copyright: Whether the nonstatutory defense of laches is available without restriction to bar all remedies for civil copyright claims filed within the three-year statute of limitations prescribed by Congress, 17 U.S.C. § 507(b).

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

United States v. Castleman

Criminal Law: Whether a conviction for misdemeanor domestic assault qualifies as a conviction for a "misdemeanor crime of domestic violence" under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(9).

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

United States v. Quality Stores, Inc.

Tax Law: Whether severance payments made to involuntarily terminated employees are taxable as wages under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act.

(Filing Date: 10-01-2013)

Cline v. Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice

Constitutional Law: Whether the Oklahoma Supreme Court erred in holding that Oklahoma House Bill 1970 is facially unconstitutional under Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

(Filing Date: 06-27-2013)

Paroline v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether the "proximate result" language of 18 U.S.C. § 2259(b)(3)(F) requires the government or victim to establish some, if any, "causal relationship or nexus between defendant's conduct and victim's harm or damages" in order to recover restitution.

(Filing Date: 06-27-2013)

White v. Woodall

Criminal Procedure: (1) Whether the trial court's failure to include a no adverse inference instruction to the jury is grounds for Habeas Corpus relief; and (2) whether such error is harmless under Brecht v Abrahamson.

(Filing Date: 06-27-2013)

American Lung Association v. EME Homer City Generation

Environmental Law: (1) Whether the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) methodology was properly challenged before the court without the required objections raised during public comment; (2)whether the courts creation of its implementation method over stepped the bounds of its judicial review of an Administrative agency; And (3) whether an upwind state has any obligations to a downwind state unless and until the EPA has reported on the contribution of the upwind state to the pollution of the downwind state.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

Environmental Protection Agency v. EME Homer City Generation

Environmental Law: Whether the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must quantify a states contribution to downwind non-attainment before adopting a FIP; and whether the EPA's interpretation of "contributes significantly" may permissibly define "significant" interstate pollution to include the cost effective reductions an upwind state can make to improve air pollution in downwind states.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v Arkison

Bankruptcy Law: Whether Article III of the US Constitution allows a bankruptcy court to exercise their judicial power on the basis of litigant consent, and if allowed, does “implied consent” caused by a litigant’s conduct, where a statute does not require consent of the litigant, satisfy Article III.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

Lozano v. Alvarez

Constitutional Law: Whether the one-year filing period of the Hague Convention and the International Child Abduction Remedies Act, 42 U.S.C. § 11603 (2005) begins from the date of wrongful removal or tolled until the petitioning parent discovers the abducted child's whereabouts.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

Mayorkas v. Cuellar de Osorio

Immigration: (1) Whether the Child Status Protection Act ("CSPA") grants “automatic conversion and priority date retention” to allow applicants who were derivative recipients of visas but "aged out" before the visas were granted, and now apply as adults, to apply using the original filing date of their parents' visa applications; And (2) whether the Board of Immigration Appeals ("BIA") exceeded its authority when it interpreted CSPA was ambiguous and narrowly limited "automatic conversion."

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

McCullen v Coakley

First Amendment: Whether Massachusetts’s selective exclusion law, which makes it a crime for persons to “enter or remain on a public way or sidewalk” within thirty-five feet of an entrance, exit, or driveway of a “reproductive health care facility” unless the person is an “employee or agent” of the facility acting within the scope of their employment, violates the First and Fourteenth Amendments.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

Michigan v Bay Mills Indian Community

Tribal Law: Whether Federal Courts have jurisdiction over tribal casinos that are not on tribal land and whether tribal sovereign immunity bars a state from bring a claim against a tribal casino that is not on tribal land.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

National Labor Relations Board v. Canning

Constitutional Law: "(1) Whether the President’s recess-appointment power may be exercised during a recess that occurs within a session of the Senate, or is instead limited to recesses that occur between enumerated sessions of the Senate, and (2) whether the President’s recess-appointment power may be exercised to fill vacancies that exist during a recess, or is instead limited to vacancies that first arose during that recess."

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

UBS v. Union de Empleados

Civil Procedure: Whether the proper standard of review for a dismissal under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23.1 is de novo review or abuse of discretion.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

Unite Here Local 355 v. Mulhall

Labor Law: Whether an employer and union may violate Section 302 of the Labor-Management Relations Act, 29 U.S.C. § 186, by entering into an agreement under which the employer exercises 1) its freedom of speech by promising to remain neutral to union activity, 2) its property rights by granting union representatives limited access to the employer’s property and employees, and 3) its freedom of contract by obtaining the union’s promise to forego its rights to picket, boycott, or otherwise put pressure on the employer’s business.

(Filing Date: 06-24-2013)

Air Wisconsin Airlines Corp. v. Hoeper

Civil Law: Whether the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA) gives immunity without a determination that an air carrier's disclosure was materially false.

(Filing Date: 06-17-2013)

Law v. Siegel

Bankruptcy Law: Whether a Bankruptcy Court should allow a surcharge to extend to a debtor’s protected homestead property.

(Filing Date: 06-17-2013)

Mount Holly v. Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in Action, Inc.

Constitutional Law: Whether the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. §3604, includes disparate impact claims.

(Filing Date: 06-17-2013)

Ray Haluch Gravel Co., Et al. V. Central Pension Fund, Et al.

Appellate Procedure: Whether a district court’s decision that does not resolve a request for contractual attorney’s fees is a final decision under 28 U.S.C. § 1291, which provides that courts of appeals have jurisdiction of appeals from final decisions of the district courts.

(Filing Date: 06-17-2013)

BG Group PLC v. Republic of Argentina

Arbitration: Whether an arbitrator or court has power to determine whether a prerequisite to arbitration has occurred.

(Filing Date: 06-10-2013)

Lexmark International, Inc. v. Static Control Components, Inc.

Standing: Whether the appropriate standard to determine standing in an action for false advertising is (1) the factors found in Associated General Contractors of California, Inc. v. California State Council of Carpenters; (2) the categorical test which permits suits only by an actual competitor; or (3) the "reasonable interest" test.

(Filing Date: 06-03-2013)

United States v. Apel

Property Law: Whether 18 U.S.C. §1382, which prohibits a person from reentering property owned by the military after an officer has ordered him not to reenter, applies to property where there is a public easement.

(Filing Date: 06-03-2013)

Mississippi ex rel. Hood v. AU Optronics Corp.

Civil Procedure: Whether a state's parens patriae suit can be removed from state court under the Class Action Fairness Act as a "mass action" when the cause of action arises under state law with the state being the sole plaintiff.

(Filing Date: 05-28-2013)

Rosemond v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether a the crime of aiding and abetting the use of a firearm during a federal drug trafficking offense requires proof of the defendant's facilitation or encouragement of the principal, or simple knowledge that the principal used the firearm during a crime in which the defendant participated.

(Filing Date: 05-28-2013)

Fernandez v California

Constitutional Law: "Whether, under Georgia v. Randolph, a defendant must be personally present and objecting when police officers ask a co-tenant for consent to conduct a warrantless search or whether a defendant’s previously stated objection, while physically present, to a warrantless search is a continuing assertion of 4th Amendment rights which cannot be overridden by a co-tenant."

(Filing Date: 05-20-2013)

Lawson v. FMR LLC

Employment Law: Whether the First Circuit erred when it construed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX), 18 U.S.C. § 1514A, to only protect whistleblower employees of publicly traded companies, but not private companies.

(Filing Date: 05-20-2013)

Medtronic Inc. v. Boston Scientific Corp., et al.

Patents: Whether the patentee bears the burden of proof in patent infringement case when the patentee is foreclosed from an infringement claim by a license agreement.

(Filing Date: 05-20-2013)

Northwest Inc. v. Ginsberg

Preemption: Whether a contract claims based on the doctrine of good faith and fair dealing is preempted by the Airline Deregulation Act.

(Filing Date: 05-20-2013)

Town of Greece v. Galloway

Constitutional Law: Whether a legislative prayer practice violates the Establishment Clause.

(Filing Date: 05-20-2013)

Burnside v. T. Walters, et al.

Criminal Procedure: Whether the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit erred in holding that indigent plaintiffs are prohibited from amending their pleadings under 28 U.S.C. §1915(e)(2).

(Filing Date: 05-13-2013)

Burrage v. United States

Criminal Procedure: (1) Whether the crime of distribution of drugs causing death under 21 U.S.C. §841 is a strict liability crime; and (2) whether jury instructions which allow a conviction by distribution of heroin which "contributed to" death, but was not the sole cause.

(Filing Date: 04-29-2013)

DaimlerChrysler AG v. Bauman

Civil Procedure: Whether a court may exercise personal jurisdiction over a foreign corporation based solely on its relationship to a subsidiary in the forum state.

(Filing Date: 04-22-2013)

Heimeshoff v. Hartford Life Insurance Co.

Civil Procedure: Whether judicial review of the statute of limitations in an Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) disability benefit claim may begin to run before the claimant can bring a legal action.

(Filing Date: 04-15-2013)

Sprint Communications Co. v Jacobs

Civil Procedure: Whether the United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit erred in applying the abstention doctrine to a review a "coercive" or "remedial" state proceeding.

(Filing Date: 04-15-2013)

Atlantic Marine Construction Co. v. United States District Court for the Western District of Texas

Civil Procedure: (1) Whether a forum-selection clause designating an alternative federal forum is enforceable under Stewart Organization, Inc. v. Ricoh Corp., limited to review under a discretionary balancing-of-conveniences analysis under 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a) and (2) Whether district courts should allocate the burden of proof between parties seeking to enforce or avoid forum-selection clauses.

(Filing Date: 04-01-2013)

Kaley v. United States

Criminal Procedure: Whether the Fifth and Sixth Amendments entitle criminal defendants to a pre-trial adversarial hearing (in which they may challenge the evidentiary support of the underlying charges) on ex parte restraining orders which limit their ability to retain counsel of choice.

(Filing Date: 03-18-2013)

Madigan v. Levin

Civil Rights § 1983: Whether a state or local employee's claim for age discrimination under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 is precluded by the Age Discrimination and Employment Act.

(Filing Date: 03-18-2013)

U.S. Forest Service v. Pacific Rivers Council

Administrative Law: (1) Whether a plaintiff has Article III standing if it failed to establish a specific imminent threatened injury from its contact with the forest area affected by United States Forest Service proposals; (2) whether a plaintiff's claim is ripe if it can still object once it identified a specific injurious project; and (3) whether the National Environmental Policy Act requires the United States Forest Service to analyze all potential environmental effects as soon as reasonably possible.

(Filing Date: 03-18-2013)

Walden v. Fiore

Civil Procedure: (1) Whether knowledge that Plaintiff has connections to the forum State constitute “express aiming” for specific personal jurisdiction; and (2) whether venue is established under 28 U.S.C. § 1391(b)(2) when the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred in a judicial district other than the forum state.

(Filing Date: 03-04-2013)

Burt v. Titlow

Constitutional Law: (1) Whether a defendant’s subjective testimony is sufficient to prove that but-for ineffective counsel, she would have pled guilty; (2) Whether the appropriate remedy under Lafler v. Cooper is to resentence a defendant who proves that ineffective assistance led to her refusal to plead guilty.

(Filing Date: 02-25-2013)

Kansas v. Cheever

Criminal Procedure: Whether the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination was violated when the state used a court-ordered mental evaluation to rebut the defendant's expert testimony that claimed the defendant lacked the requisite mental state to commit capital murder due to methamphetamine use.

(Filing Date: 02-25-2013)

Bond v. United States

Preemption: Whether Congress can enact legislation in areas normally reserved to the states in order to implement a valid treaty.

(Filing Date: 01-18-2013)

Chadbourne & Parke LLP v. Troice

Preemption: Whether the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (SLUSA) precludes a state-law class action alleging fraud and misrepresentation in a Ponzi scheme.

(Filing Date: 01-18-2013)

Metrish v. Lancaster

Habeas Corpus: (1) Whether the Michigan Supreme Court’s decision to abolish a criminal defendant's right to raise diminished capacity as a mitigating defense was “unexpected and indefensible” such that it could not be constitutionally applied retroactively to Respondent's past conduct; and (2) whether the retroactive application of that decision was so lacking in justification that Respondent is entitled to habeas relief.

(Filing Date: 01-18-2013)

Proskauer Rose LLP v. Troice

Preemption: Whether the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (SLUSA) precludes private class actions where the alleged securities transaction is “more than tangentially related” to the “heart, crux or gravamen” of the alleged fraud.

(Filing Date: 01-18-2013)

Univ. Texas Southwestern Med. v. Nassar

Employment Law: Whether Title VII’s retaliation provision and related statutes require plaintiff to prove discrimination was a “but-for cause” for an adverse employment action or merely a “motivating factor” for the action.

(Filing Date: 01-18-2013)

Willis of Colorado Inc. v. Troice

Preemption: Whether state law class actions suits are precluded under the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (SLUSA) because a misrepresentation is “made in connection with the purchase or sale of a covered security” where the representation asserts that an uncovered security is backed by safe, liquid, covered securities.

(Filing Date: 01-18-2013)

Salinas v. Texas

Constitutional Law: Whether, or under what conditions, prearrest, pre-Miranda silence is protected by the Fifth Amendment.

(Filing Date: 01-12-2013)

Agency for Int’l Dev. v. Alliance for Open Society Int’l, Inc.

First Amendment: Whether §7631(f) of the United States Leadership against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Act of 2003 (“Leadership Act”), which requires that agencies that receive federal funding to administer foreign HIV and AIDS programs must have a policy explicitly opposing prostitution and sex-trafficking, and endorse the government’s stance on prostitution, violates the First Amendment.

(Filing Date: 01-11-2013)

American Trucking Associations, Inc. v. City of Los Angeles

Preemption: (1) Whether the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act contains an unstated “market participant” exception that allows a municipal governmental entity to act in conflict with the express preemption clause when the municipal entity does not participate in the market and does not have any interest in the efficient procurement of services; (2) “Whether permitting a municipal governmental entity to bar federally licensed motor carriers from access to a port operates as a partial suspension of the motor carriers' federal registration.”

(Filing Date: 01-11-2013)

Hillman v. Maretta

Preemption: Whether the Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance Act (FEGLIA) preempts Virginia’s omitted spouse statute that allows a third party to recover death benefits from the named beneficiary.

(Filing Date: 01-11-2013)

Sekhar v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether a government agent’s "recommendation" is intangible property capable of being extorted under the Hobbs Act and 18 U.S.C. §875(d).

(Filing Date: 01-11-2013)

United States v. Kebodeaux

Constitutional Law: Whether the Sex Offender and Notification Act (SORNA) is constitutional as applied against a person who completed his criminal sentence prior to SORNA's enactment.

(Filing Date: 01-11-2013)

Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl

Indian Law: (1) Whether a voluntary adoption initiated by a non-Indian parent under state law may be blocked by the Indian Child Welfare Act when the Indian parent did not have prior custody; and (2) whether ICWA’s definition of "parent" includes a biological father without legal status as a parent under state law.

(Filing Date: 01-04-2013)

Tarrant Regional Water Dist. v. Herrmann

Water Rights: (1) Whether Congress’ ratification of an interstate compact constitutes “expressly stated” or “unmistakably clear” congressional intent to immunize the relevant state laws from dormant Commerce Clause scrutiny; and (2) whether the compact preempts state laws that limit other signatories’ access to the water in question.

(Filing Date: 01-04-2013)

United States v. Davila

Criminal Procedure: Whether the court of appeals erred in finding that a criminal defendant's guilty plea should be vacated when a judicial participation occurs in violation of Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 11(c)(1), irrespective of individual prejudice to the defendant.

(Filing Date: 01-04-2013)

FTC v. Watson Pharmaceuticals

Patents: Whether reverse-payment agreements between brand-name and generic drug manufacturers are per se lawful or presumptively anticompetative and unlawful.

(Filing Date: 12-19-2012)

Dan's City Used Cars, Inc. v. Pelkey

Preemption: Whether the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act preempts state law on the manner by which a towing company can collect debts secured by a lien.

(Filing Date: 12-07-2012)

Hollingsworth v. Perry

Constitutional Law: Whether it is a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment for a state to use the ballot initiative process to ban marriage between same-sex couples.

(Filing Date: 12-07-2012)

Oxford Health Plans, LLC v. Sutter

Arbitration: Whether an arbitrator acts within his powers under the Federal Arbitration Act or exceeds those powers when allowing class arbitration based solely on parties’ use of broad contractual language in an arbitration agreement.

(Filing Date: 12-07-2012)

United States v. Windsor

Constitutional Law: Whether section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) violates the Fifth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause by defining marriage as "only a legal union between one man and one woman."

(Filing Date: 12-07-2012)

Ass’n for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc.

Patents: Whether human genes are patentable.

(Filing Date: 11-30-2012)

Mutual Pharmaceutical Co. v. Bartlett

Preemption: Whether federal law preempts state law design-defect claims against generic drug manufacturers.

(Filing Date: 11-30-2012)

Horne v. U.S. Dept. of Agriculture

Constitutional Law: Whether a party may bring a Fifth Amendment Just Compensation Clause challenge in district court prior to exhausting the statutorily prescribed process for obtaining just compensation through the Court of Federal Claims.

(Filing Date: 11-20-2012)

Sebelius v. Cloer

Attorney Fees: Whether a person who untimely files a claim under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program is eligible for an award of attorneys’ fees when the claim was brought in good faith and with a reasonable basis.

(Filing Date: 11-20-2012)

American Exp. Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant

Arbitration: Whether the Federal Arbitration Act allows a court to invalidate an arbitration agreement which prohibits class arbitration of a federal statutory claim.

(Filing Date: 11-09-2012)

Maryland v. King

Constitutional Law: Whether the Fourth Amendment allows states to collect and analyze DNA from persons arrested for violent crimes who have been charged but not convicted.

(Filing Date: 11-09-2012)

Peugh v. United States

Sentencing: Whether a court violates the Constitution's ex post facto clause by retroactively applying current sentencing guidelines to past crimes when the result is a harsher sentence.

(Filing Date: 11-09-2012)

Shelby County, Ala. v. Holder

Constitutional Law: "Whether Congress' decision in 2006 to reauthorize Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act under the pre-existing coverage formula of Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act exceeded its authority under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments and thus violated the Tenth Amendment and Article IV of the United States Constitution."

(Filing Date: 11-09-2012)

Bullock v. BankChampaign

Bankruptcy Law: Whether §523(a)(4) of the Bankruptcy Code requires a showing of “extreme recklessness” or merely “objective recklessness” to constitute defalcation.

(Filing Date: 10-29-2012)

McQuiggin v. Perkins

Habeas Corpus: Whether a prisoner claiming actual innocence when petitioning for a writ of habeas corpus must do so with "reasonable diligence."

(Filing Date: 10-29-2012)

PPL Corp. v. CIR

Tax Law: Whether courts should apply a formalistic or substance-based approach when determining the creditability of foreign tax credits.

(Filing Date: 10-29-2012)

Trevino v. Thaler

Habeas Corpus: Whether a state court procedural defect acts to bar a federal habeas court from hearing a substantial claim of ineffective assistance at trial.

(Filing Date: 10-29-2012)

Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council

Preemption: (1) Whether the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit erred when it applied a heightened preemption test under the Elections Clause instead of applying the more traditional preemption analysis under the Supremacy Clause; and (2) whether the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit erred in holding that the National Voter Registration Act preempted an Arizona law requiring proof of eligibility to register to vote.

(Filing Date: 10-15-2012)

Alleyne v. United States

Sentencing: Whether Harris v. United States, which held that the Constitution does not require facts which increase a mandatory minimum sentence to be determined by a jury, should be overruled.

(Filing Date: 10-05-2012)

Bowman v. Monsanto

Patents: Whether patents on seeds containing self-replicating technology are exhausted after an authorized sale.

(Filing Date: 10-05-2012)

Boyer v. Louisiana

Constitutional Law: Whether a five-year delay due to a state funding crisis for indigent defendants counts against the state for speedy trial purposes.

(Filing Date: 10-05-2012)

Cable, Telecommunications, and Technology Committee v. FCC

Administrative Law: Whether a Chevron analysis is appropriate for reviewing an administrative agency's interpretation of its own jurisdiction.

(Filing Date: 10-05-2012)

Gunn v. Minton

Civil Procedure: Whether federal courts possess exclusive subject-matter jurisdiction over state-based legal malpractice claims that require application of federal patent law.

(Filing Date: 10-05-2012)

Koontz v. St. Johns River Water Mgmt.

Property Law: Whether an "exactions taking" occurs under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution when the government actor does not compel dedication of any interest in the real property to the public use, and when the alleged exaction consists of imposition of a monetary obligation as a condition of permit issuance but the permit is never issued.

(Filing Date: 10-05-2012)

McBurney v. Young

Constitutional Law: Whether the Virginia Freedom of Information Act, which limits the right of access to public documents to Virginia citizens, violates the Constitution's Privileges and Immunities and dormant commerce clauses.

(Filing Date: 10-05-2012)

Delia v. E.M.A.

Preemption: Whether the Medicaid Act’s anti-lien provision preempts a North Carolina statute allowing the Department of Health and Human Services to place liens on settlement proceeds.

(Filing Date: 09-25-2012)

Gabelli v. Securities and Exchange Commission

Civil Procedure: Whether the five-year limitations period under 28 U.S.C. § 2462 is calculated from the date of the underlying infraction or from when the government actually—or should have—discovered the fraud when there are no additional legislative controlling provisions.

(Filing Date: 09-25-2012)

Levin v. United States

Tort Law: Whether the United States and individual military personnel acting within the scope of their employment can be sued for the common law tort of battery.

(Filing Date: 09-25-2012)

Maracich v. Spears

Professional Responsibility: Whether lawyers may use personal information protected by the Driver's Privacy Protection Act to investigate and solicit potential clients for a class action litigation or whether such use falls outside the permissible scope of the litigation exception.

(Filing Date: 09-25-2012)

Millbrook v. United States

Tort Law: Whether 28 U.S.C. §§1346(b) and 2680(h) waive the sovereign immunity of the United States for intentional torts committed by prison guards who are acting within the scope of their employment but are not exercising authority to "execute searches, to seize evidence or to make arrests for violations of Federal law."

(Filing Date: 09-25-2012)

Missouri v. McNeely

Criminal Procedure: Whether evidence obtained by a nonconsensual and warrantless blood sample from a drunk driver is admissible under the exigent circumstances exception to the Fourth Amendment warrant requirement based upon the natural dissipation of alcohol in the bloodstream.

(Filing Date: 09-25-2012)

Descamps v. United States

Sentencing: Whether a state conviction under a modified statute that is missing an element of the generic crime may be used to enhance sentencing under the Armed Career Criminal Act.

(Filing Date: 09-06-2012)

The Standard Fire Insurance Co. v. Knowles

Civil Procedure: Whether a class action plaintiff's stipulation limiting damages to below the federal amount in controversy threshold, made to defeat defendant's right of removal under the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, is binding on absent class members.

(Filing Date: 08-31-2012)

Chafin v. Chafin

Standing: Whether an appeal of a ruling on a petition for Return of Children under the Hague Convention becomes moot when the child at issue returns to his or her own country of habitual residence.

(Filing Date: 08-13-2012)

Already, LLC v. Nike, Inc.

Constitutional Law: Whether a covenant not to sue deprives a defendant of a counterclaim due to loss of Article III subject matter jurisdiction since there is no case or controversy for the court to rule on.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

American Tradition Partnership v. Bullock

Constitutional Law: A state ban on independent political expenditures from corporate general treasuries unduly burdens First Amendment rights.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Comcast Corp. v. Behrend

: Whether district courts may certify class actions without first resolving whether the class has introduced admissible evidence—including expert testimony—to establish the case is susceptible to an award of damages on a class-wide basis in satisfaction of the predominance requirements of Fed. R. Civ. P. 23.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

FTC v. Phoebe Putney Health System, Inc.

Corporations: (1) Whether the Georgia legislature “clearly articulated and affirmatively expressed [a] state policy to displace competition” when it vested powers to acquire and lease hospitals; if so (2) whether such policy is sufficient to validate anticompetitive conduct given minimal state involvement with a leased hospital.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Genesis HealthCare Corp. v. Symczyk

Constitutional Law: Whether Article III’s Case or Controversy Clause moots an action when the plaintiff receives an offer that satisfies all of plaintiff's claims.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Georgia-Pacific West, Inc. v. Northwest Environmental Defense Center & Decker v. Northwest Environmental Defense Center

Environmental Law: Whether the Ninth Circuit erred when it rejected the EPA’s position that runoff from forest roads does not require a permit and mandated that the EPA regulate such runoff as industrial stormwater subject to the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Henderson v. United States

Criminal Procedure: Whether an error can be "plain error” under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 52(b), when a law that was previously unsettled becomes settled during subsequent appeal.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Los Angeles County Flood Control District v. Natural Resources Defense Council

Environmental Law: Whether water that flows from one point in a navigable waterway, through a man-made channel, and back into the same river, can be considered a "discharge" from an "outfall" under the Clean Water Act.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Sebelius v. Auburn Regional Medical Center

Civil Procedure: Whether the 180-day statutory time limit for filing an appeal with the Provider Reimbursement Review Board from a final Medicare payment determination made by the PRRB is subject to equitable tolling.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

US Airways, Inc. v. McCutchen

Employment Law: Whether § 502(a)(3) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) authorizes courts to use equitable principles to rewrite contractual language and refuse to order participants to reimburse their plan for benefits paid even when the plan’s terms give it an absolute right to full reimbursement.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Vance v. Ball State University

Employment Law: Whether "supervisor" liability under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 applies to harassment by individuals the employer has vested with authority to direct and oversee alleged victims’ work, or is limited to individuals who are empowered to “hire, fire, demote, promote, transfer, or discipline” the alleged victim.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2012)

Smith v. United States

Criminal Law: Whether the defendant bears the burden of proving withdrawal from a conspiracy or whether the burden shifts to the government once the defendant meets the burden of production to show withdrawal from the conspiracy.

(Filing Date: 06-18-2012)

Amgen Inc. v. Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds

Civil Procedure: Whether a court must require proof of materiality or allow evidence rebutting the applicability of the fraud-on-the-market theory before certifying a class based on that theory.

(Filing Date: 06-11-2012)

Evans v. Michigan

Constitutional Law: Whether an erroneously granted directed verdict, based on the prosecution’s failure to prove a non-existent element of the crime is an acquittal subject to the double-jeopardy provisions of the United States and state constitutions.

(Filing Date: 06-11-2012)

Bailey v. United States

Criminal Procedure: Whether Michigan v. Summers, 452 U.S. 692 (1981) allows police officers executing a search warrant to detain an individual who left the premises before the warrant was executed.

(Filing Date: 06-04-2012)

Marx v. General Revenue Corp.

Civil Procedure: Whether (1) a facsimile from a debt collection agency to a third party regarding a consumer's employment information constitutes a communication and is therefore in violation of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) and (2) the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure permitting award of costs to a prevailing party is superseded by the cost provision of the FDCPA.

(Filing Date: 05-29-2012)

Clapper v. Amnesty Int'l USA

Standing: Whether a belief that legislation might result in future injury coupled with the funds expended in an effort to prevent that future injury is sufficient to meet the injury in fact requirement for Article III standing.

(Filing Date: 05-21-2012)

Chaidez v. United States

Criminal Procedure: Whether the rule announced in Padilla v. Kentucky—that an attorney provides ineffective assistance of counsel in violation of the Sixth Amendment by failing to inform a criminal defendant that a guilty plea carries a risk of deportation—applies retroactively to persons whose convictions were already final.

(Filing Date: 04-30-2012)

Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Copyright: Whether the Copyright Act's "first sale doctrine" freely permits resale of foreign works legally purchased overseas and imported into the United States as the Third Circuit has held, or if such works can only be resold after the copyright holder explicitly approves the sale as the Second Circuit has held, or if they can only be resold after the copyright holder approves an earlier sale as the Ninth Circuit has held.

(Filing Date: 04-16-2012)

Arkansas Game & Fish Commission v. United States

Constitutional Law: Whether a physical invasion must be permanent in order to constitute a taking under the Fifth Amendment.

(Filing Date: 04-02-2012)

Moncrieffe v. Holder

Immigration: Whether the government bears the burden of proving a defendant was convicted of a drug trafficking charge that would constitute a federal felony in order to justify removal as an aggravated felon under 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1).

(Filing Date: 04-02-2012)

Florida v. Harris

Criminal Procedure: Whether an alert by a narcotics detection dog is sufficient to establish probable cause to search a vehicle.

(Filing Date: 03-26-2012)

Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action

Constitutional Law: "Whether a state violates the Equal Protection Clause by amending its constitution to prohibit race- and sex-based discrimination or preferential treatment in public-university admissions decisions."

(Filing Date: 03-25-2012)

United States v. Woods

Tax Law: “(1) Whether Section 6662 of the Internal Revenue Code, which prescribes a penalty for an underpayment of federal income tax that is “attributable to” an overstatement of basis in property, applies to an underpayment resulting from a determination that a transaction lacks economic substance because the sole purpose of the transaction was to generate a tax loss by artificially inflating the taxpayer’s basis in property. (2) Whether the district court had jurisdiction in this case under 26 U.S.C. §6226 to consider the substantial valuation misstatement penalty.”

(Filing Date: 03-25-2012)

Ryan v. Gonzalez

Habeas Corpus: Whether an indigent death row inmate is entitled to stay the federal habeas proceedings he initiated if he is not competent to assist counsel.

(Filing Date: 03-19-2012)

Tibbals v. Carter

Habeas Corpus: Whether a prisoner who has been sentenced to death has a "right to competence" and if so whether a federal court may stay habeas proceedings indefinitely.

(Filing Date: 03-19-2012)

Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co.

Corporations: (1) Whether the question of corporate civil tort liability under the Alien Tort Statute (“ATS”), 28 U.S.C. §1350, is a question of merits or one of subject matter jurisdiction; and (2) whether, like any other private party, a corporation may be held liable under the ATS for committing a tort, such as torture or genocide, in violation of the law of nations, or whether it is immune from liability.

(Filing Date: 02-28-2012)

Fisher v. University of Texas

Constitutional Law: Whether including race as a factor in determining undergraduate admissions was a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment.

(Filing Date: 02-21-2012)

Lozman v. The City of Riviera Beach, Florida

Admiralty: Whether a floating structure that is indefinitely moored, receives power and other utilities from shore, and is not intended to be used in maritime transportation or commerce, constitutes a “vessel” under 1 U.S.C. § 3, thus triggering federal maritime jurisdiction.

(Filing Date: 02-21-2012)

Taniguchi v. Kan Pacific Saipan

Civil Procedure: (Whether an award of costs for interpretation includes costs for translation of documents.)

(Filing Date: 02-21-2012)

Sandifer v. United States Steel Corp.

Employment Law: Whether donning and doffing safety clothing falls within the meaning of “changing clothes” in Section 203(o) of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

(Filing Date: 02-19-2012)

Sandifer v. United States Steel Corp.

Employment Law: Whether donning and doffing safety clothing falls within the meaning of “changing clothes” in Section 203(o) of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

(Filing Date: 02-19-2012)

Johnson v. Williams

Habeas Corpus: (1)Whether a habeas petitioner's claim has been “adjudicated on the merits” for purposes of 28 U.S.C. § 2254(d); and (2) whether, under § 2254, a federal habeas court (a) may grant relief on the ground that the petitioner had a Sixth Amendment right to retain a biased juror on the panel and (b) may reject a state court’s finding of juror bias because it disagrees with the finding and the reasons stated for it, even where the finding was rationally supported by evidence in the state-court record.

(Filing Date: 01-17-2012)

Kloeckner v. Solis

Administrative Law: Whether the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has sole subject matter jurisdiction over an appeal from a ruling by the Merit Systems Protection Board when the case includes both discrimination and unlawful termination claims.

(Filing Date: 01-17-2012)

United States v. Bormes

Sovereign Immunity: Whether the Little Tucker Act (LTA), 28 U.S.C. § 1346(a)(2), waives sovereign immunity of the United States with respect to damages actions for violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), 15 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq.

(Filing Date: 01-17-2012)

Florida v. Jardines

Criminal Procedure: Whether a trained narcotics detection dog's sniff at a suspected grow house's front door is a Fourth Amendment search requiring probable cause.

(Filing Date: 01-06-2012)

Arizona v. United States

Preemption: Whether an Arizona immigration law is preempted by federal law, specifically the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

(Filing Date: 12-12-2011)

Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians v. Patchak and Patchak v. Salazar

Standing: Whether a private individual who alleges injuries resulting from the operation of a gaming facility on Indian trust land has standing to challenge a decision of the Secretary of the Interior to take title to that land in trust, on the ground that the decision was not authorized by the Indian Reorganization Act, and (2) whether a suit of that nature is an action under the Quiet Title Act, which supplants section 702 of the Administrative Procedures Act’s waiver of sovereign immunity.

(Filing Date: 12-12-2011)

RadLAX Gateway Hotel, LLC v. Amalgamated Bank

Bankruptcy Law: Whether a debtor may pursue a Chapter 11 plan that proposes to sell assets free of liens without allowing the secured creditor to credit bid, but instead providing it with the indubitable equivalent of its claim under Section 1129(b)(2)(A)(iii) of the Bankruptcy Code.

(Filing Date: 12-12-2011)

F.A.A. v. Cooper

Civil Procedure: Whether a plaintiff who alleges only mental and emotional injuries can establish actual damages within the meaning of the civil remedies provision of the Privacy Act, 5 U.S.C. § 552a(g)(4)(A).

(Filing Date: 11-30-2011)

Christopher v. SmithKline Beecham Corp. (11-204)

Administrative Law: (1) Whether deference is owed to the to the Secretary of Labor’s interpretation of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s sales exemption; and (2)whether the FLSA’s outside sale exemption applies to pharmaceutical sales representatives.

(Filing Date: 11-28-2011)

Hill v. United States and Dorsey v. United States

Sentencing: Whether the Fair Sentencing Act applies in a sentencing proceeding that takes place on or after the statute’s effective date when the underlying offense occurred prior to that date.

(Filing Date: 11-28-2011)

Southern Union Co. v. U.S.

Sentencing: Whether the Apprendi requirement, which requires any fact, other than a prior conviction, that increases the penalty for a crime beyond the prescribed statutory maximum be submitted to a jury, and proved beyond a reasonable doubt, applies to criminal fines.

(Filing Date: 11-28-2011)

Armour v. Indianapolis

Constitutional Law: Whether the City of Indianapolis violated the 14th Amendment by forgiving outstanding assessments for some property owners while not offering refunds for others who had paid in full.

(Filing Date: 11-14-2011)

Astrue v. Capato

Administrative Law: Whether a child conceived after his biological father's death and prohibited by state intestacy law from inheriting personal property is nonetheless eligible for child survivor benefits under Title II of the Social Security Act.

(Filing Date: 11-14-2011)

Florida v. Department of Health and Human Services

Constitutional Law: Whether the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act's expansion of the Medicaid law exceeds Congress's power under the Spending Clause of Article I.

(Filing Date: 11-14-2011)

National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius

Constitutional Law: Whether the entire Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act must be invalidated because its mandate requiring individuals to obtain health insurance is nonseverable from the remainder of the Act.

(Filing Date: 11-14-2011)

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services v. Florida

Constitutional Law: (1) Whether the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is beyond Congress’ Article I power because it includes a mandate for individuals to obtain health insurance or pay a monetary fine; and (2) Whether the Anti-Injunction Act, 26 U.S.C. §7421(a), bars suits by challengers to the Act.

(Filing Date: 11-14-2011)

Mohamad v. Rajoub

Corporations: (Whether the Torture Victim Protection Act includes corporations or organizations as possible defendants.)

(Filing Date: 10-17-2011)

United States v. Alvarez

First Amendment: (Whether the Stolen Valor Act is facially invalid under the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment.)

(Filing Date: 10-17-2011)

Freeman v. Quicken Loans, Inc.

Civil Law: Whether § 8(b) of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) prohibits a real estate settlement services provider from charging an unearned fee only if the fee is divided between two or more parties.

(Filing Date: 10-11-2011)



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