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Virginia Office for Protection and Advocacy v. Stewart

Docket No. Op. Below Argument Opinion Vote Author Term
09-529 4th Cir. Dec 1, 2010
Tr.Aud.
Apr 19, 2011 6-2 Scalia OT 2010

Holding: Ex Parte Young allows a federal court to hear a lawsuit for prospective relief against state officials brought by another agency of the same state. (Kagan, J., recused).

Plain English Holding: To comply with a federal statute that provides funds to states for the care of people with disabilities, Virginia established a state agency to advocate on behalf of patients in state institutions. The Supreme Court held that Virginia cannot invoke its sovereign immunity to prevent that agency from suing state officials for a court order requiring the officials to comply with the federal statute.

Judgment: Fourth Circuit reversed, 6-2, in an opinion by Justice Scalia on April 19, 2011. Chief Justice Roberts filed a dissenting opinion, joined by Justice Alito. Justice Kennedy filed a concurring opinion, joined by Justice Thomas. (Kagan, J., recused).

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Merits Briefs

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Certiorari-Stage Documents

  • Opinion below (4th Circuit)
  • Petition for certiorari (unavailable)
  • Brief in opposition (unavailable)
  • Petitioner’s reply (unavailable)
  • Amicus brief of the United States (invited) (grant)
  • Amicus Brief of Law Professors (unavailable)
  • Amicus Brief of New Jersey Public Advocate (unavailable)
  • Supplemental brief of respondents (unavailable)

 
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