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U.S. Supreme Court

Jun 3, 2014

Police chase case raises concerns among defense bar

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling that police did not violate the Fourth Amendment by shooting more than a dozen rounds into the car of a fleeing unarmed suspect is making defense attorneys and civil liberties advocates uneasy. The decision in Plumhoff v. Rickard, No 12-1117, nixed a civil rights lawsuit brought by the […]

May 13, 2014

Affirmative action ruling adds new twist to same-sex marriage challenges

WASHINGTON — The recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding a state law barring the consideration of race in public university admission decisions is having an immediate effect on a set of closely watched appeals involving an entirely different issue: the constitutionality of state same-sex marriage bans. In Schuette v. BAMN, the Supreme Court upheld a […]

May 8, 2014

Supreme Court town prayer ruling divides justices, bar

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court ruling allowing prayers to be delivered before public town meetings divided the justices in two ways: in the result and in the standard that applies in determining whether public prayers violate the Establishment Clause. Attorneys’ reaction to the decision in Town of Greece v. Galloway, No. 12-696, was also […]

May 6, 2014

Last patent case of the term could end in a bust

WASHINGTON — In the last oral argument of the term, the U.S. Supreme Court took up a closely-watched patent case that practitioners hoped would establish a standard for indirect patent infringement. But early on the justices seemed to realize that the case, Limelight Networks Inc. v. Akamai Technologies Inc., No. 12-786, might not present the […]

Apr 30, 2014

Justices search for limits in cell phone search cases

WASHINGTON — Applying centuries-old constitutional principles to situations not contemplated by the Founding Fathers is nothing new for the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court. But that doesn’t make it easy, as was clear during two hours of oral argument Tuesday in cases testing the Fourth Amendment’s limits on cell phone searches. The attorneys arguing […]

U.S. Supreme Court
Apr 29, 2014

Court ponders First Amendment retaliation case

WASHINGTON — The justices of the U.S. Supreme Court tackled a host of issues in a multi-layered First Amendment case involving alleged government corruption and claims of employment retaliation and qualified immunity. The case of Lane v. Franks, No. 13-483, was brought by Edward Lane, a director of a youth program at Central Alabama Community […]

Apr 29, 2014

Patent case gives justices a workout

WASHINGTON — In a case that could clarify the specificity with which patent holders must describe their inventions, the justices of the U.S Supreme Court and the attorneys arguing the case of Nautilus Inc. v. Biosig Instruments Inc., No. 13-369, had a tough time finding the right words to articulate a standard. The case stems […]

Apr 25, 2014

Supreme Court ponders if state law nixes homeowners’ toxic tort claim

WASHINGTON — The ability of a group of North Carolina homeowners to bring a lawsuit over latent contamination in their well water will come down to the U.S. Supreme Court’s answer to a single, if technical, question: Is there a functional difference between a statute of limitations and a statute of repose? The issue in […]

Apr 23, 2014

High court takes on law barring false political speech

WASHINGTON — The justices of the U.S. Supreme Court seemed to cast some constitutional doubt on a state statute that prohibits making false statements about political candidates during oral arguments Tuesday in the case of Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus, No. 13-193. But the court may not reach the merits of the case. The […]

Apr 23, 2014

Legal juice drink showdown reaches Supreme Court

WASHINGTON — During oral arguments on Monday, the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court seemed disinclined to hold that a Lanham Act claim of false representation against beverage giant Coca-Cola was preempted under the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. The case POM Wonderful LLC v. Coca-Cola Co., 12-761, stems from a product released by Coca-Cola […]

Apr 9, 2014

Supreme Court averts avalanche of FICA refund requests

WASHINGTON — Avoiding what attorneys say could have been an “earthquake” effect from businesses rushing to file for a collective $1 billion in tax refunds, the U.S. Supreme Court recently held that severance payments are wages for federal tax withholding purposes. The court’s decision in U.S. v. Quality Stores Inc. concluded that “supplemental unemployment compensation […]

Apr 3, 2014

Supreme Court takes up ERISA fiduciary duty case

WASHINGTON — Seeking to resolve a rather lopsided circuit split, the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court seem poised to support a requirement that employees alleging breach of fiduciary duty overcome a pleading-stage presumption that employee stock plan fiduciaries acted with prudence. The case of Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer, No. 12-751, comes from the […]

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