United States Supreme Court

2021

January 1 summary

Chicago v. Fulton

The retention of estate property, post-bankruptcy filing, does not violate §362(a)(3) of the Bankruptcy Code because that provision is a "stay" of "any act" to "exercise control" over the assets of the estate which refers to affirmative acts disrupting the status quo of property.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Bankruptcy Law

February 4 summaries

Federal Republic of Germany v. Philipp

The expropriation exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act incorporates the domestic takings rule, which makes a sovereign’s taking of its own nationals’ property a domestic affair.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Sovereign Immunity

Salinas v. United States Railroad Retirement Board

Judicial review is available, under the Railroad Retirement Act of 1974 (RRA), to the same degree available under the judicial review provision of the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act (RUIA). Therefore, the qualification for judicial review under the RRA is contingent on the meaning of the phrase “any final decision” as used in §355(f) of the RUIA.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

American Medical Assn. v. Cochran, Sec. of H&HS

In 2019, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a Rule imposing major changes on the Title X family planning program. See 84 Fed. Reg. 7,714 (Mar. 4, 2019). The Rule both prohibits and compels certain pregnancy-related speech between a Title X provider and her patient, proscribing abortion-related information but requiring information about non-abortion options—regardless of what the patient wants. The Rule also imposes burdensome physical separation requirements on any Title X provider engaging in abortion-related activities outside the Title X program. 1. Whether the Rule is arbitrary and capricious. 2. Whether the Rule violates the Title X appropriations act, which requires that “all pregnancy counseling” under Title X 'shall be nondirective.' 3. Whether the Rule violates Section 1554 of the Affordable Care Act, 42 U.S.C. § 18114, which requires that HHS 'shall not promulgate any regulation' that harms patient care in any one of six ways, including by 'interfer[ing] with communications' between a patient and her provider.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

Brownback v. King

A plaintiff needs to plausibly allege, under state law, “the United States, if a private person, would be liable to the claimant” to survive both a Rule 12(b)(6) merits determination and a subject-matter jurisdiction determination. §1346(b)(1).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Civil Procedure

March 5 summaries

Pereida v. Wilkinson

Specific nonpermanent residents bear the burn to show they do not have a conviction of a disqualifying offense when seeking cancellation of a lawful removal order under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). The alien fails to carry that burden if his conviction falls under the statute listing multiple offenses, including those that are disqualifying, and the record shows ambiguity on which crime was the basis of the conviction.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Immigration

United States Fish and Wildlife Serv. v. Sierra Club, Inc.

The deliberative process privilege shields predecisional and deliberative documents from Freedom of Information Act requests, but documents which communicate an agency’s settled position on a matter are not protected.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

Uzuegbunam v. Preczewski

"[For Article III standing requirements], [t]he plaintiff must have (1) suffered an injury in fact, (2) that is fairly traceable to the challenged conduct of the defendant, and (3) that is likely to be redressed by a favorable judicial decision." Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, 136 S.Ct. 1540, 1547 (2016) (internal citation omitted).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Civil Procedure

Torres v. Madrid

The use of physical force against a person with the intent to restrain is a seizure for Fourth Amendment purposes, even if the person is not subdued.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

Wooden v. United States

Convictions stemming from a single criminal episode count as a single “occasion” under 18 U.S.C. §924(e)(1).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

April 11 summaries

Facebook, Inc. v. Duguid

Under 47 U.S.C. §227(a)(1)(A), an autodialer must have the capacity “to use a random or sequential number generator” to either “store or produce phone numbers” to be called.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Civil Law

FCC v. Prometheus Radio Project

Under Section 202(h) of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) must review its ownership rules every four years to repeal or modify any rules that no longer serve the public interest. In conducting its analysis under Section 202(h), the FCC must consider the effects of the rules on competition, localism, viewpoint diversity, and minority and female ownership of broadcast media outlets.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

Florida v. Georgia

The Supreme Court “has recognized for more than a century its inherent authority, as part of the Constitution’s grant of original jurisdiction, to equitably apportion interstate streams between States.” Kansas v. Nebraska, 574 U.S. 445, 454 (2015). Consequently, given the competing sovereign interests in such cases, a complaining State bears a burden much greater than does a private party seeking an injunction.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Water Rights

Google LLC v. Oracle America, Inc.

To the extent that computer interface code is copyrightable, the copying of a small portion of that code to transform it into a mobile operating system is fair use.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Copyright

AMG Cap. Mgmt., LLC v. FTC

Section 13(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act does not explicitly authorize the Federal Trade Commission to obtain court-ordered monetary relief.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

Carr v. Saul

Administrative proceedings must be adversarial in nature for a court to impose the requirement of issue exhaustion.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

Jones v. Mississippi

Miller v. Alabama and Montgomery v. Louisiana do not require a sentencer to make a finding that a defendant under the age of eighteen is permanently incorrigible before imposing a sentence of life without parole.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Juvenile Law

Alaska v. Wright

A habeas petitioner does not remain "in custody" under a conviction "after the sentence imposed for it has fully expired, merely because of the possibility that the prior conviction will be used to enhance the sentences imposed for any subsequent crimes of which he is convicted.” Maleng v. Cook, 490 U. S. 492 (1989).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Habeas Corpus

New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen

Whether the State's denial of petitioners' applications for concealed-carry licenses for self-defense violated the Second Amendment.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Constitutional Law

Niz-Chavez v. Garland

“[T]he stop-time rule is triggered when the alien is served a notice to appear under section 1229(a).”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Immigration

Shinn v. Ramirez

Does application of the equitable rule this Court announced in Martinez v. Ryan render 28 U.S.C. § 2254(e)(2) inapplicable to a federal court’s merits review of a claim for habeas relief?

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

May 7 summaries

BP P.L.C. v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore

Under Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A. v. Calhoun, 516 U.S. 199, 204 (1996), and despite the fact that appellate courts “may not reach beyond the certified order to address other orders made in the case,” appellate courts “may address any issue fairly included within the certified order because it is the order that is appealable, and not the controlling question identified by the district court.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Civil Procedure

Caniglia v. Strom et al.

The “community caretaking exception” to warrantless searches articulated in Cady v. Dombrowski does not apply to homes, because there is a constitutional difference between vehicles and homes.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

CIC Services, LLC v. IRS

The Anti-Injunction Act bars any “suit for the purpose of restraining the assessment or collection of any tax.” 26 U.S.C. § 7421(a). However, a reporting requirement is not a tax, and a suit brought to set aside such a rule is not one to restrain the “assessment or collection” of a tax—even if the information will help the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) collect future tax revenue. See Direct Marketing Assn. v. Brohl, 575 U.S. 1, 9-10 (2015).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Tax Law

Edwards v. Vannoy

New procedural rules announced by the Supreme Court are not retroactively applied on federal collateral review.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Post-Conviction Relief

Guam v. United States

Contribution actions under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) may be pursued only after settlement of a “CERCLA-specific liability.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Environmental Law

United States v. Palomar-Santiago

The Supreme Court reversed the Ninth Circuit, holding that each statutory requirement under 8 U.S.C. §1326(d) is mandatory.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

San Antonio v. Hotels.com

Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 39 governs the taxation of appellate “costs,” and the question in this case is whether a district court has the discretion to deny or reduce those costs.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Appellate Procedure

June 15 summaries

Garland v. Ming Dai

The INA provides that a reviewing court must accept “administrative findings” as “conclusive unless any reasonable adjudicator would be compelled to conclude to the contrary.” §1252(b)(4)(B).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Immigration

United States v. Cooley

The Court relied on its decision in Montana v. United States, 450 U.S. 544 (1981), saying that a tribe retains authority over the conduct of non-Indians “when that conduct threatens or has a direct effect on the political integrity, economic security, or the health and welfare of the tribe.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Tribal Law

Van Buren v. United States

Under 18 U.S.C. § 1030(a)(2), the phrase “exceeds authorized access” is limited by the phrase “entitled so to obtain,” such that an individual cannot to have been said to violate the statute for obtaining information from a computer that they are otherwise authorized to access, even if the individual accessed the information for improper purposes.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

FBI v. Fazaga

Whether Section 1806(f) displaces the state-secrets privilege and authorizes a district court to resolve, in camera and ex parte, the merits of a lawsuit challenging the lawfulness of government surveillance by considering the privileged evidence.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Evidence

Sanchez v. Mayoraks

The conferral of Temporary Protected Status does not admit foreign nationals to the United States and therefore “does not make an unlawful entrant … eligible under § 1255 for adjustment to LPR status.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Immigration

Borden v. United States

The ACCA applies to individuals who have committed three or more acts of violence with a mens rea greater than recklessness.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

Terry v. U.S.

In light of the clear text, we hold that §2(a) of the Fair Sentencing Act modified the statutory penalties only for subparagraph (A) and (B) crack offenses—that is, the offenses that triggered mandatory-minimum penalties.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

Fulton v. Philadelphia

Maximizing the number of foster parents, protecting the City from liability, and ensuring equal treatment of prospective foster parents and children were not "interests of the highest order" and, therefore, are not sufficient to survive strict scrutiny.

Area(s) of Law:
  • First Amendment

Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. v. Arkansas Teacher Retirement System

The generic nature of a misrepresentation is important evidence of price impact, even though that same evidence may be relevant to materiality. Amgen Inc. v. Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds, 568 U.S. 455 (2013).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Business Law

National Collegiate Athletic Assn. v. Alston

The rule of reason standard requires a court to engage in a fact specific inquiry of the market power and market structure to measure the competitive impact of restraints on competition and is required when the restraint at issue involves complex structures.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Antitrust

Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid

A state regulation that appropriates for labor unions the right of access of agricultural employer's property is a per se taking under the fourth and fifth amendments.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Constitutional Law

Lange v. California

Fourth Amendment precedents point toward assessing case by case the exigencies arising from misdemeanants’ flight. When the totality of circumstances shows an emergency—a need to act before it is possible to get a warrant—the police may act without waiting.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

HollyFrontier Cheyenne Refining, LLC v. Renewable Fuels Assn.

Under the RFP, “a small refinery may at any time petition the Administrator for an extension of the exemption under subparagraph (A) for the reason of disproportionate economic hardship.” 42 U.S.C. § 7545(o)(9)(B)(i).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Environmental Law

Yellen v. Confederated Tribes of Chehalis Reservation

ANCs are Indian Tribes and thus are eligible to receive funding from the CARES Act.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Indian Law

Pakdel v. City and County of San Francisco

The Supreme Court held that Respondent’s requirement to "execute the lifetime lease" was a final agency action and that the government action constituted "an actual, concrete injury," and "administrative 'exhaustion of state remedies was not a prerequisite for a takings claim when the government has reached a conclusive position.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Constitutional Law

July 1 summary

California v. Texas

“Where a standing theory rests on speculation about the decision of an independent third party (here an individual's decision to enroll in a program like Medicaid), the plaintiff must show at the least “that third parties will likely react in predictable ways.” Department of Commerce v. New York, 588 U.S. ___, ___, 139 S. Ct. 2551, 2566, 204 L. Ed. 2d 978.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Constitutional Law

August 0 summaries

September 0 summaries

October 0 summaries

November 1 summary

Mississippi v. Tennessee

Aquifers are subject to remedy from the courts under equitable apportionment.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Water Rights

December 1 summary

Whole Woman’s Health v. Jackson

Sovereign immunity allows a pre-enforcement challenge to state legislation under the U.S. Constitution to proceed beyond the motion to dismiss stage against litigants with enforcement power against abortion providers, but not state judges, clerks, the state attorney general, or private parties.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Sovereign Immunity

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