Editor's Note :

Editor's Note :

On Wednesday the court hears oral argument in Czyzewski v. Jevic Holding Corporation. Daniel Bussel has our preview.

Breaking News :

Breaking News :

Petitions We’re Watching

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Petitions Relisted for the Next Conference

Docket Case Page Issue(s)
15-1485 District of Columbia v. Wesby (1) Whether police officers who found late-night partiers inside a vacant home belonging to someone else had probable cause to arrest the partiers for trespassing under the Fourth Amendment, and in particular whether, when the owner of a vacant home informs police that he has not authorized entry, an officer assessing probable cause to arrest those inside for trespassing may discredit the suspects' questionable claims of an innocent mental state; and (2) whether, even if there was no probable cause to arrest the apparent trespassers, the officers were entitled to qualified immunity because the law was not clearly established in this regard.
15-8114 Tyler v. Louisiana (1) Whether, when counsel fully concedes the client's guilt to all charges over the client's express objection, counsel's performance amounts to a complete failure to subject the prosecution's case to meaningful adversarial testing so that the United States v. Cronic prejudice standard applies (as every other state and federal court to consider the question has held), or whether the Strickland v. Washington prejudice standard applies (as the lower court in this case held); (2) whether the petitioner's 14th Amendment rights under Boykin v. Alabama and Brookhart v. Janis were violated when his counsel entered the “functional equivalent of a guilty plea” to first-degree murder over his objections; (3) whether the petitioner's Sixth Amendment right to self-representation under Faretta v. California was violated when the trial court did not explain that the petitioner had the right to represent himself when he tried unsuccessfully to fire his attorneys; and (4) whether, in a capital case, the defense counsel who concedes guilt after failing to investigate and present a readily available innocence defense against his client's express wishes renders ineffective assistance under Strickland.
15-9329 Stokes v. South Carolina (1) Whether it is a violation of the Sixth Amendment guarantee of conflict-free counsel for a lawyer who previously prosecuted a defendant to represent that same defendant in a subsequent and related capital trial; and (2) whether a valid waiver of the right to conflict-free counsel can be found when the trial record contains no mention of a conflict or waiver, and the post-conviction record does not address, let alone satisfy, the constitutionally required elements of a valid waiver.
16-67 White v. Pauly (1) Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit's panel opinion improperly denied qualified immunity to the officers by considering the validity of the use of force from the perspective of the suspects rather than from the perspective of a reasonable police officer on the scene; and (2) whether the panel opinion considered clearly established law at too high a level of generality rather than giving particularized consideration to the facts and circumstances of this case.
16-142 Honeycutt v. U.S. Whether 21 U.S.C. § 853(a)(1) mandates joint and several liability among co-conspirators for forfeiture of the reasonably foreseeable proceeds of a drug conspiracy.
16-5247 Sireci v. Florida Whether a state court violates a petitioner's federal due process rights when it denies a new trial and DNA testing in an actual innocence case in which newly discovered evidence demonstrates that the only physical evidence linking the petitioner to the crime scene was based upon inaccurate forensic science and false expert testimony.
16-5580 Broom v. Ohio (1) Whether the first attempt to execute the petitioner was cruel and unusual under the Eighth and 14th Amendments to the United States Constitution and if so, whether the appropriate remedy is to bar any further execution attempt on the petitioner; (2) whether a second attempt to execute the petitioner will be a cruel and unusual punishment and a denial of due process in violation of the Eighth and 14th Amendments to the United States Constitution; and (3) whether a second attempt to execute the petitioner will violate double jeopardy protections under the Fifth and 14th Amendments to the United States Constitution.

Petitions Featured as Petition of the Day

Docket Case Page Issue(s)
16-679 McFadden v. U.S. (1) Whether and under what circumstances overwhelming evidence of an element omitted from a criminal jury instruction is a sufficient basis for finding the error harmless; and (2) whether proof that the defendant knew the name and physiological effects of the product he was selling compels a jury to conclude that the defendant “knew he was dealing with a ‘controlled substance’” as required by McFadden v. United States.
16-596 Alaska v. Jewell Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit's exceedingly permissive standard improperly allows the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services to designate huge geographic areas as “critical habitat” under the Endangered Species Act when much of the designated area fails to meet the statutory criteria.
16-595 Arthur v. Alabama (1) Whether Alabama's advisory jury death sentencing scheme, which is in all relevant aspects the same as the Florida scheme reviewed in Hurst v. Florida, violates the Sixth Amendment; (2) whether Hurst and the Sixth and Eighth Amendments require, at least, a unanimous jury recommendation for a sentence of death, as the Florida Supreme Court held on remand in Hurst; and (3) whether the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Hurst applies retroactively to the petitioner's case, and the cases of other condemned inmates sentenced under unconstitutional capital sentencing laws, where the new rule announced in Hurst implicates the fundamental right to a fair trial and substantially enhances fact-finding procedures.
16-551 EON Corp. IP Holdings, LLC v. Silver Spring Networks Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit erred in ordering entry of judgment as a matter of law on a ground not presented in a Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 50(b) motion in the district court, even though the ground presented a purely legal question.
16-507 Taylor v. Nevada (1) Whether the warrantless access and use of hundreds of data points showing the petitioner's historical cell phone location over a weeklong period was a search that violated the petitioner's federal Fourth Amendment rights; and (2) whether the show-up of the petitioner was unnecessarily suggestive, resulting in unreliable out-of-court and in-court identifications that violated his federal constitutional right to due process of law.
16-500 R.P. v. Los Angeles County Department of Child and Family Services (1) Whether the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 applies where the child has not been removed from an Indian family or community; (2) whether ICWA's adoptive placement preferences, 25 U.S.C. § 1915(a), require removal from a foster placement made under Section 1915(b), for the purpose of triggering the adoptive placement preferences contained in Section 1915(a); and (3) whether the state courts erred in holding that “good cause” to depart from ICWA's placement preferences must be proved by “clear and convincing evidence”—contrary to the text and structure of the statute and the decision of at least one other state court of last resort—or otherwise erred in their interpretation of “good cause.”
16-499 Jesner v. Arab Bank, PLC Whether the Alien Tort Statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1350, categorically forecloses corporate liability.
16-497 Smith v. Internal Revenue Service Whether a taxpayer who files a return after assessment has filed a “return” under Section 523(a)(1)(B) of the Bankruptcy Code.
16-493 Merck & Cie v. Watson Laboratories Whether the “on sale” bar found in Section 102(b) of the Patent Act applies only to sales or offers of sale made available to the public, as Congress, this court, and the United States have all made clear, or whether it also applies to non-public sales or offers of sale, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has held.
16-477 New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association v. National Collegiate Athletic Association Whether a federal statute that prohibits adjustment or repeal of state-law prohibitions on private conduct impermissibly commandeers the regulatory power of states in contravention of New York v. United States and Printz v. United States.
16-476 Christie v. National Collegiate Athletic Association Whether a federal statute that prohibits modification or repeal of state-law prohibitions on private conduct impermissibly commandeers the regulatory power of states in contravention of New York v. United States.
16-473 Fenkell v. Alliance Holdings Whether the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 permits a cause of action for indemnity or contribution by an individual found liable for breach of fiduciary duty.
16-467 Taylor v. Maryland (1) Under the exception to the warrant requirement announced in Arizona v. Gant, permitting a vehicular search incident to a recent occupant's arrest “when it is reasonable to believe evidence relevant to the crime of arrest might be found in the vehicle,” what quantum of particularized suspicion is required by the Fourth Amendment to justify the search; and (2) whether the unquantified experience of the arresting officer, alone, may supply the necessary particularized suspicion to justify the vehicular search.
16-466 Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Court of California, San Francisco County Whether a plaintiff's claims arise out of or relate to a defendant's forum activities when there is no causal link between the defendant's forum contacts and the plaintiff's claims—that is, where the plaintiff's claims would be exactly the same even if the defendant had no forum contacts.
16-464 Lavigne v. Cajun Deep Foundations, L.L.C. (1) Whether a plaintiff is required to show that he or she was replaced by someone outside his or her protected group in order to establish a prima facie case of discriminatory termination; and (2) whether, where a claimant files a timely Title VII charge asserting that employer conduct was the result of a particular unlawful motive, the claimant may, after the end of the charge-filing period, amend that charge, or bring a civil action, asserting that the conduct was also the result of a second unlawful motive.
16-463 First Horizon Asset Securities v. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Whether the extender provision of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 displaces the three-year federal statute of repose in Section 13 of the Securities Act of 1933.
16-461 Christensen v. U.S. (1) Whether the Sixth Amendment guarantee of a unanimous verdict by an impartial jury (A) precludes a court from removing a juror during deliberations when the record discloses any possibility that the removal request stems from the juror's views on the merits of the case and (B) precludes a court from questioning the jury when faced with allegations of juror misconduct that could be related to the merits; and (2) whether, as the plain text provides, Title III of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 requires suppression of all recordings made for the purpose of committing a criminal or tortious act.
16-460 Artis v. District of Columbia Whether the tolling provision in 28 U.S.C. § 1367(d) suspends the limitations period for the state-law claim while the claim is pending and for thirty days after the claim is dismissed, or whether the tolling provision does not suspend the limitations period but merely provides 30 days beyond the dismissal for the plaintiff to refile.
16-445 Sims v. Tennessee Whether this court's decision in Hall v. Florida must be applied retroactively on collateral review.
16-424 Class v. U.S. Whether a guilty plea inherently waives a defendant's right to challenge the constitutionality of his statute of conviction.
16-413 Armstrong v. National Football League Whether the approval of a global class-action settlement of claims against the National Football League stemming from current and future brain injuries is consistent with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23's adequacy-of-representation requirement and due process.
16-402 Carpenter v. U.S. Whether the warrantless seizure and search of historical cell phone records revealing the location and movements of a cell phone user over the course of 127 days is permitted by the Fourth Amendment.
16-399 Perry v. Merit Systems Protection Board Whether a Merit Systems Protection Board decision disposing of a “mixed” case (one which challenges certain adverse employment actions and also involves a claim under the federal anti-discrimination laws) on jurisdictional grounds is subject to judicial review in district court or in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.
16-395 Payne v. Tennessee Whether this court's decision in Hall v. Florida must be applied on collateral review.
16-393 Abbott v. Veasey (1) Whether Texas' voter-ID law “results in” the abridgment of voting rights on account of race; and (2) whether judgment should be rendered for the petitioners on the claim that Texas' voter-ID law was enacted with a racially discriminatory purpose.
16-389 Dusek v. JPMorgan Chase & Co. Whether the filing of a putative class action serves, under American Pipe & Construction Co. v. Utah, to satisfy a statute of repose—such as the five-year period in 28 U.S.C. § 1658(b)(2) applicable to fraud claims under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934—with respect to the claims of putative class members.
16-388 Patterson v. Raymours Furniture Company Whether a provision in an employment arbitration agreement that prohibits employees from seeking adjudication of any work-related claim on a class, collective, joint, or representative basis in any forum is invalid and unenforceable under Sections 2 and 3 of the Norris-LaGuardia Act, 29 U.S.C. §§ 102, 103, and Sections 7 and 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act, 29 U.S.C. §§ 157, 158(a)(1), because it “interfere[s]” with the employees' statutory right “to engage in . . . concerted activities for the purpose of . . . mutual aid or protection.”
16-377 LifeScan Scotland, Ltd. v. Pharmatech Solutions Whether the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act permits the Patent Trial and Appeal Board instead of the Director to make inter partes review institution decisions.
16-373 California Public Employees’ Retirement System v. Moody Investors Service (1) Whether the filing of a putative class action serves, under the American Pipe & Construction Co. v. Utah rule, to satisfy the three-year time limitation in Section 13 of the Securities Act with respect to the claims of putative class members (Question granted in Public Employees’ Retirement System of Mississippi v. IndyMac MBS, Inc.); and (2) whether a member of a timely filed putative class action may file an individual suit on the same causes of action before class certification is decided, notwithstanding the expiration of the relevant time limitations.
16-372 SRM Global Master Fund Limited Partnership v. The Bear Stearns Companies LLC Whether the timely filing of a putative class action serves, under American Pipe & Construction Co. v. Utah, to satisfy the five-year period of repose in 28 U.S.C. § 1658(b)(2) applicable to fraud claims under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, with respect to the claims of the class members.
16-366 Ethicon Endo-Surgery v. Covidien LP Whether the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act permits the Patent Trial and Appeal Board instead of the Director to make inter partes review institution decisions.
16-364 Blackman v. Gascho (1) Whether it is permissible to approve a “claims-made” settlement by calculating its value based on the value of payments to all potential claimants, rather than only payments to actual claimants, under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(e)(2); and (2) whether it is permissible to approve a settlement that intentionally provides a disproportionate allocation of its pecuniary benefit to class counsel, under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(e)(2).
16-360 Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc. v. Acorda Therapeutics Inc. Whether the mere filing of an abbreviated new drug application by a generic pharmaceutical manufacturer is sufficient to subject the manufacturer to specific personal jurisdiction in any state where it might someday market the drug.
16-352 Security University, LLC v. Int'l Information Systems Security Certification Consortium What the proper standard under the Lanham Act is for analyzing a defendant's nominative use of a plaintiff's trademark.
16-349 Henson v. Santander Consumer USA Whether a company that regularly attempts to collect debts it purchased after the debts had fallen into default is a “debt collector” subject to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
16-345 Gugliuzza v. Federal Trade Commission (1) Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit erred in affirming a judgment under Section 13(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act in an amount greatly exceeding disgorgement of the ill-gotten gain in the defendant's possession, even though the statute authorizes only equitable remedies and other circuits have held that restitutionary recovery must be limited to the defendant's unjust gain; and (2) whether the 9th Circuit erred in allowing under Section 13(b) the imposition of joint and several liability, which is a legal damages construct that does not center on the defendant's unjust gain, was not available in the traditional courts of equity, and has been held to be unavailable as an equitable remedy by the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 2nd, 4th and 10th Circuits.
16-341 TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Food Brands Group LLC Whether the patent venue statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1400(b), which provides that patent infringement actions “may be brought in the judicial district where the defendant resides[,]” is the sole and exclusive provision governing venue in patent infringement actions and is not to be supplemented by the statute governing “[v]enue generally,” 28 U.S.C. § 1391, which has long contained a subsection (c) that, where applicable, deems a corporate entity to reside in multiple judicial districts.
16-334 Bank Melli v. Bennett (1) Whether Section 1610(g) of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act establishes a freestanding exception to sovereign immunity, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit held below, or instead merely supersedes First National City Bank v. Banco Para El Comercio Exterior de Cuba’s presumption of separate status while still requiring a plaintiff to satisfy the criteria for overcoming immunity elsewhere in Section 1610, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit has held and the United States has repeatedly urged; and (2) whether a court should apply federal or state law to determine whether assets constitute “property of” or “assets of” the sovereign under the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act and Section 1610(g), and whether those provisions require that the sovereign own the property in question, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has held and the United States has repeatedly urged, contrary to the decision below.
16-333 Brown v. Buhman (1) Whether the government can seek to moot a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a statute by adopting a new non-enforcement policy during the pendency of litigation; (2) whether the government can later moot by voluntary cessation a subsequently filed lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a statute under which the government publicly threatened a party with prosecution; and (3) when a district court makes underlying findings of fact in the course of adjudicating a claim under the voluntary cessation doctrine, under what standard of review those findings should be examined on appeal.
16-332 Apotex Inc. v. Amgen Inc. (1) Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit erred in holding that biosimilar applicants that make all disclosures necessary under the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act for the resolution of patent disputes (viz. 42 U.S.C. § 262(l)(2)(A)) must also provide the reference product sponsor with a notice of commercial marketing under 42 U.S.C. § 262(l)(8)(A); and (2) whether the Federal Circuit improperly extended the statutory 12-year exclusivity period to 12 1/2 years by holding that a biosimilar applicant cannot give effective notice of commercial marketing under 42 U.S.C. § 262(l)(8)(A) for its biosimilar product until it receives a Food and Drug Administration license and therefore may not commercially market its biosimilar product for 180 days after receiving its license.
16-327 Lee v. U.S. Whether it is always irrational for a noncitizen defendant with longtime legal resident status and extended familial and business ties to the United States to reject a plea offer notwithstanding strong evidence of guilt when the plea would result in mandatory and permanent deportation.
16-317 Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas v. Robert R. McCormick Foundation (1) Whether the the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit correctly held—contrary to several other courts of appeals—that the presumption against federal preemption of state law does not apply in the bankruptcy context; (2) whether the 2nd Circuit correctly held—following the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 3rd, 6th, and 8th Circuits, but contrary to the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 7th and 11th Circuits—that a fraudulent transfer is exempt from avoidance under 11 U.S.C. § 546(e) when a financial institution acts as a mere conduit for fraudulently transferred property, or whether instead the safe harbor applies only when the financial institution has its own beneficial interest in the transferred property; and (3) whether the 2nd Circuit correctly held—contrary to this court's decisions holding that it is for Congress, and not the courts, to balance the multiple purposes of the Bankruptcy Code, and that courts must therefore rely first and foremost on the text of the Code—that 11 U.S.C. § 546(e) is properly construed to extend far beyond its text and impliedly preempt fraudulent-transfer actions brought by private parties (as opposed to the “trustee” expressly mentioned in the statute).
16-309 Maslenjak v. U.S. Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit erred by holding, in direct conflict with the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 1st, 4th, 7th, and 9th Circuits, that a naturalized American citizen can be stripped of her citizenship in a criminal proceeding based on an immaterial false statement.
16-308 Dot Foods v. Department of Revenue for the State of Washington Whether, or under what circumstances, imposing additional tax beyond the year preceding the legislative session in which the law was enacted violates due process.
16-307 National Labor Relations Board v. Murphy Oil USA Whether arbitration agreements with individual employees that bar them from pursuing work-related claims on a collective or class basis in any forum are prohibited as an unfair labor practice under 29 U.S.C. § 158(a)(1), because they limit the employees' right under the National Labor Relations Act to engage in “concerted activities” in pursuit of their “mutual aid or protection,” 29 U.S.C. § 157, and are therefore unenforceable under the savings clause of the Federal Arbitration Act, 9 U.S.C. § 2.
16-300 Ernst & Young LLP v. Morris Whether the collective-bargaining provisions of the National Labor Relations Act prohibit the enforcement under the Federal Arbitration Act of an agreement requiring an employee to arbitrate claims against an employer on an individual, rather than collective, basis.
16-299 National Association of Manufacturers v. Department of Defense Whether the Sixth Circuit erred when it held that it has jurisdiction under 33 U.S.C. § 1369(b)(1)(F), the portion of the Clean Water Act's judicial review provision which requires that agency actions “in issuing or denying any permit” under Section 1342 be reviewed by the court of appeals, to decide petitions to review the waters of the United States rule, even though the rule does not “issu[e] or den[y] any permit” but instead defines the waters that fall within Clean Water Act jurisdiction.
16-287 Sai v. Transportation Safety Administration Whether the collateral order doctrine permits the immediate appeal of a district court order denying appointment of counsel under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(1).
16-285 Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis Whether an agreement that requires an employer and an employee to resolve employment-related disputes through individual arbitration, and waive class and collective proceedings, is enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act, notwithstanding the provisions of the National Labor Relations Act.
16-284 Greenberg v. New York Whether the exception to federal preemption contained in the National Securities Markets Improvement Act of 1996 for state enforcement actions alleging “fraud or deceit” applies to the New York Attorney General's prosecution of an action under state statutes that do not satisfy the federal definition of “fraud” because they do not require proof of scienter.
16-283 Gilchrist v. National Football League (1) Whether this court should resolve the split in the circuit courts of appeals regarding whether, how, and under what circumstances Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals must be satisfied for a class to be certified under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 when challenged expert testimony is at issue, particularly in light of this court leaving issues open in Tyson Foods, Inc. v. Bouaphakeo; (2) whether this court's rulings in Amchem Products, Inc. v. Windsor and Comcast Corp. v. Behrend require the district court, before approving the National Football League head trauma settlement under FRCP 23, to have assessed the disputed scientific propositions justifying the settlement under the Daubert standard, given the existence of (a) material disputes about the credibility of those scientific propositions, (b) unrequited requests for adversarial discovery and evidentiary hearings, as well as the fact that (c) the “individual stakes are high and disparities among class members great,” Amchem; and (3) whether it is fundamentally wrong and an abdication of fiduciary duties to absent class members under FRCP 23 for the lower courts to have approved the NFL's head trauma class action settlement where there was no adversarial discovery on, and no definitive assessments about, the disputed “scientific” propositions regarding head trauma that were the basis for vastly disparate relief to class members along with a comprehensive release of claims.
16-276 Doe v. Backpage.com LLC Whether Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which provides that no internet service provider “shall be treated as the publisher or speaker” of internet content that was “provided by another,” precludes a civil lawsuit against a website owner and operator based on its own criminal conduct any time online content created by a third party was part of the chain of causation leading to the plaintiff's injuries.
16-267 Direct Marketing Association v. Brohl (1) Whether a state statute that imposes regulatory obligations that apply, as a matter of law, solely to out-of-state companies, but does not use “language explicitly identifying geographical distinctions” in its text, discriminates against interstate commerce; (2) whether the 10th Circuit erred in adopting a “comparative burdens” test for discrimination, under which the burden of regulatory requirements imposed solely on out-of-state retailers may be offset by different obligations on in-state retailers; and (3) whether the 10th Circuit erred in concluding that out-of-state retailers that do not collect Colorado sales tax are “not similarly situated” to their direct in-state competitors who collect Colorado sales tax.
16-257 Hawkins v. Woods (1) Whether a state court “adjudicat[es] on the merits” a petitioner's ineffective-assistance-of-counsel claim where it neither considers a material part of the record supporting the claim nor grants a timely request for an evidentiary hearing to develop that claim; and (2) whether a federal court that gives deference to a state court decision under 28 U.S.C. § 2254(d) may hypothesize ways to find important evidence unpersuasive, where the state court's reasoned decision did not consider that evidence.
16-240 Weaver v. Massachusetts Whether a defendant asserting ineffective assistance that results in a structural error must, in addition to demonstrating deficient performance, show that he was prejudiced by counsel's ineffectiveness, as held by four circuits and five state courts of last resort; or whether prejudice is presumed in such cases, as held by four other circuits and two state high courts.
16-237 Serrano-Mercado v. U.S. (1) Whether a district court commits plain error by enhancing a sentence based on a divisible statute without requiring the government to meet its burden of proving that the conviction arose under a qualifying prong of that statute, as five Circuits have held, or whether on plain-error review the burden instead shifts to the defendant to affirmatively show that the alleged predicate offense did not arise under a qualifying prong of the statute, as four Circuits have held; and (2) whether the district court's additional enhancement of Petitioner's sentence based on a second predicate offense under the crime of violence residual clause was error in this case because that clause is unconstitutionally vague.
16-206 DeKalb County Pension Fund v. Transocean Ltd. Whether the filing of a putative class action serves to suspend as to putative class members a period of repose such as the three-year period applicable to claims brought under Section 14(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, 15 U.S.C. § 78n(a).
16-204 FTS USA, LLC v. Monroe (1) Whether the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Due Process Clause permit a collective action to be certified and tried to verdict based on testimony from a small subset of the putative plaintiffs, without either any statistical or other similarly reliable showing that the experiences of those who testified are typical and can reliably be extrapolated to the entire class, or a jury finding that the testifying witnesses are representative of the absent plaintiffs; and (2) whether the procedure for determining damages upheld by the Sixth Circuit, in which the district court unilaterally determined damages without any jury finding, violates the Seventh Amendment.
16-202 Romag Fasteners v. Fossil (1) Whether, under Section 35 of the Lanham Act, willful infringement is a prerequisite for an award of infringer's profits for a violation of Section 43(a), which prohibits trademark infringement through false representations regarding the origin, endorsement, or association of goods through the use of another's distinctive mark; and (2) whether and to what extent the defense of laches may bar an award for patent infringement brought within the Patent Act's six-year statutory limitations period, 35 U.S.C. § 286—the same issue this Court granted for plenary review in SCA Hygiene Products Aktiebolag v. First Quality Baby Products, LLC.
16-199 Denelsbeck v. New Jersey Whether the New Jersey Legislature has packed the consequences of a conviction of a third or subsequent traffic offense under New Jersey Statutes Annotated 39:4-50 so as to render the offense “serious” and to entitle offenders to the right to a jury trial under the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution and the decisional law of this Court.
16-186 Foster v. Vilsack (1) Whether federal courts should defer, under Auer v. Robbins, to an agency construction of an interpretive field manual (“second level Auer deference”), as have the Sixth Circuit and the Eighth Circuit decision below, or not, as the Fifth Circuit has held; and (2) whether the use of a remote comparison site, preselected ten years prior and without notice to the petitioners or an opportunity to be heard, as the sole means of determining that their land supports wetland plants, violates their rights to due process of law under the Fifth Amendment.
16-152 Denault v. U.S. (1) Whether the government fails to satisfy the “money or property” requirement of wire fraud, 18 U.S.C. § 1343, when a misrepresentation deprives the purported victim of information about a potential economic benefit, but the purported victim has no contractual right or other legal entitlement to that benefit; and (2) whether the court of appeals must actually determine, and not merely presume, that a sentencing court has discharged its duty under 18 U.S.C. § 3553 and Rita v. United States to state its reasons for imposing a particular sentence after having considered the defendant's arguments and the statutory factors.
16-141 Hyosung D&P Co., Ltd. v. U.S. (1) Whether deference under Auer v. Robbins should be afforded to the interpretation of an agency regulation offered by the agency's lawyers in a case in which the agency is itself a party; and (2) whether Auer and Bowles v. Seminole Rock & Sand Co. should be overruled.
16-136 Government of Belize v. BCB Holdings Limited (1) Whether, under the doctrine of forum non conveniens, as applied to a confirmation action to enforce a foreign arbitral award, a foreign forum is per se inadequate because assets in the United States cannot be attached by a foreign court, as the D.C. Circuit has held; or whether forum non conveniens remains a viable doctrine in foreign arbitration confirmation actions if the foreign forum has jurisdiction and there are some assets of the defendant available in the alternative forum, as the Second Circuit held; and (2) whether, under Article V(2)(b) of the New York Convention, public policy in favor of arbitration yields where confirmation of an arbitral award would be contrary to countervailing public policies such as constitutional separation of powers principles, combating government corruption, and/or international comity.
16-135 Government of Belize v. Newco Limited (1) Whether, under the doctrine of forum non conveniens, as applied to a confirmation action to enforce a foreign arbitration award, a foreign forum is per se inadequate because assets in the United States cannot be attached by a foreign court, as the D.C. Circuit has held; or is adequate if it has jurisdiction and there are assets of the defendant in the alternative forum, as the Second Circuit held; and (2) whether, under Article V(2)(b) of the New York Convention, the public policy in favor of arbitration yields where confirmation of an arbitral award would be contrary to the countervailing public policies such as international comity and the policy against tax evasion.
16-123 Davis v. Montana Whether a criminal defendant charged with an offense punishable by incarceration is denied due process when he is tried by a non-lawyer judge, where the defendant has no opportunity for a de novo trial before a judge who is a lawyer.
16-111 Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission Whether applying Colorado's public accommodations law to compel petitioner to create expression that violates his sincerely held religious beliefs about marriage violates the Free Speech or Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment.
16-14 Flytenow v. Federal Aviation Administration (1) What, if any, deference is due an agency's interpretation when it predominately interprets terms of common law in which courts, not administrative agencies, have special competence; (2) whether the circuit court erred when it held, in contravention of this Court's long-standing definition of “common carrier,” that pilots who use the Internet to communicate are “common carriers” when those pilots do not earn a commercial profit or indiscriminately offer to share their travel plans with the general public, thus warranting remand; and (3) whether the circuit court erred in holding that the Federal Aviation Administration could, consistent with the First Amendment, lawfully discriminate against content-based Internet communications because of the message conveyed and the means chosen by pilots to convey it.
15-1539 Kaley v. U.S. (1) Whether, where an acquitted defendant contested multiple elements of the offense, was acquitted by a general verdict, and can demonstrate that the evidence of a particular element was constitutionally insufficient, the Double Jeopardy Clause collaterally estops the government from prosecuting the defendant for another offense that also requires proof of that particular element; and (2) where an acquitted defendant contested multiple elements of the offense, what burden of proof must he shoulder to establish that a particular element was “necessarily decided” in his favor for purposes of collateral estoppel.
15-1504 Overton v. U.S. Whether, consistent with this Court's Brady v. Maryland jurisprudence, a court may require a defendant to demonstrate that suppressed evidence “would have led the jury to doubt virtually everything” about the government's case in order to establish that the evidence is material.
15-1503 Turner v. U.S. (1) Whether, under Brady v. Maryland, courts may consider information that arises after trial in determining the materiality of suppressed evidence; and (2) whether, in a case where no physical evidence inculpated petitioners, the prosecution's suppression of information that included the identification of a plausible alternative perpetrator violated petitioners' due process rights under Brady.
15-1461 Meshal v. Higgenbotham Whether a U.S. citizen may bring a Bivens claim in the absence of any other remedy when federal law enforcement officers unlawfully detain and grossly mistreat him during a criminal counterterrorism investigation abroad.
15-1419 Kreipke v. Wayne State University (1) Whether Wayne State University (WSU), a unique, autonomous institution, free from all relevant state control, who receives a minority share of its funding from the State, and who is responsible for its own debts, is a “person” under the False Claims Act (FCA); and (2) whether WSU's Board of Governors, a creation of the State and a properly formed corporation in every respect, is a “person” under the FCA.

Calls for the Views of the Solicitor General

Docket Case Page Issue(s)
22O147 New Mexico v. Colorado (1) Whether Colorado is liable under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, 42 U.S.C. § 9607(a), and common law for all costs, including prejudgment interest, incurred by New Mexico in responding to releases or threatened releases of hazardous substances from the Gold King Mine, the Sunnyside Mine, or the American Tunnel to the date of judgment; (2) whether Colorado is liable under CERCLA, 42 U.S.C. § 9613(g)(2), and common law, for all response costs that will be incurred by New Mexico in responding to releases or threatened releases of hazardous substances from the Gold King Mine, the Sunnyside Mine, or the American Tunnel; (3) whether Colorado is in violation of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act's imminent and substantial endangerment provision, 42 U.S.C. § 6972(a)(1)(B), until it ceases the disposal of hazardous substances from the Gold King Mine and the Sunnyside Mine, including, but not limited to, acid wastewater, mine sludge, mine-dump runoff, and metals into the Animas River watershed; (4) whether Colorado has negligently, recklessly and willfully authorized and allowed the discharge of toxic mine waste directly into the Animas River in a manner that has injured and continues to threaten the health, safety, and comfort of downstream New Mexico residents; (5) whether the court should award New Mexico compensatory, consequential, and punitive damages caused by Colorado's negligent, reckless, and willful conduct, including, but not limited to, investigation, clean-up, and remedial costs, economic loss, diminution in value, and stigma damages; (6) whether the court should order Colorado to abate the ongoing public nuisance in the Upper Animas Mining District and the Animas River within Colorado; and (7) whether Colorado is liable for all costs incurred and costs that may be incurred by New Mexico to abate the nuisance in the Animas and San Juan Rivers within New Mexico.
16-217 Lenz v. Universal Music Corp. Whether the Ninth Circuit erred in concluding that the affirmation of good faith belief that a given use of material use is not authorized “by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law,” required under Section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), may be purely subjective and, therefore, that an unreasonable belief—such as a belief formed without consideration of the statutory fair use factors—will not subject the sender of a takedown notice to liability under Section 512(f) of the DMCA.
16-130 U.S. ex rel. Advocates for Basic Legal Equality v. U.S. Bank, N.A. Whether, under the public disclosure bar of the False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. § 3730(e)(4)(A), which prohibits qui tam actions when “substantially the same allegations or transactions” have been publicly disclosed, unless the qui tam plaintiff is an original source of the information, a qui tam action may proceed where it is based on specific allegations of fraud that were not the subject of prior public disclosures and that add substantial material information to the public disclosures, and when the publicly disclosed allegations “encompass” the qui tam allegations only if both sets of allegations are characterized at a very high level of generality.
15-1509 U.S. Bank National Association v. Village at Lakeridge (1) Whether an assignee of an insider claim acquires the original claimant's insider status, such that his or her vote to confirm a cramdown plan cannot be counted under 11 U.S.C. § 1129(a)(10); (2) whether the appropriate standard of review for determining non-statutory insider status is the de novo standard of review applied by the Third, Seventh, and Tenth Circuit Courts of Appeal, or the clearly erroneous standard of review adopted for the first time by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal in this action; and (3) whether the proper test for determining non-statutory insider status requires bankruptcy courts to conduct an “arm's length” analysis as applied by the Third, Seventh and Tenth Circuit Courts of Appeal, or to apply a “functional equivalent” test which looks to factors comparable to those enumerated for statutory insider classifications as erroneously applied for the first time by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal in this action.
15-1464 Warfaa v. Ali Whether a claim against an individual defendant who committed war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other serious violations of international law abroad touches and concerns the United States such that the Alien Tort Statute that confers federal jurisdiction over the claim where that defendant sought safe haven in the United States, obtained lawful permanent residency in the United States, and continues to reside in the United States, availing himself of the benefits and privileges associated with living in the United States.
15-1439 Cyan v. Beaver County Employees Retirement Fund Whether state courts lack subject matter jurisdiction over covered class actions that allege only Securities Act of 1933 claims.
15-1345 Ali v. Warfaa Whether a foreign official's common-law immunity for acts performed on behalf of a foreign state is abrogated by plaintiff's allegations that those official acts violated jus cogens norms of international law.
15-1305 BeavEx Inc. v. Costello Whether the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act preempts generally-applicable state laws that force motor carriers to treat and pay all drivers as “employees” rather than as independent contractors.
15-1223 Southwest Securities v. Segner Whether, under Section 506(c) of the Bankruptcy Code, which authorizes the trustee to “recover from property securing an allowed secured claim the reasonable, necessary costs and expenses of preserving, or disposing of such property to the extent of any benefit to the holder of such claim[,]” secured creditors are obliged to shoulder the trustee's maintenance costs when retaining encumbered property in the hope of benefiting other creditors for the period a trustee abandons encumbered property.
15-1195 Amgen Inc. v. Sandoz Inc. Whether a biosimilar applicant (“Applicant”) is required by 42 U.S.C. § 262(l)(2)(A) to provide the reference product sponsor (“Sponsor”) with a copy of its biologics license application and related manufacturing information, which the statute says the Applicant “shall provide;” and (2) whether, where an Applicant fails to provide that required information, the Sponsor's sole recourse is to commence a declaratory judgment under 42 U.S.C.(l)(9)(C) and/or a patent-infringement action under 35 U.S.C. § 271(e)(2)(C)(ii).
15-1045 Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency v. U.S. ex rel. Oberg Whether the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency, a statewide agency located in the capital and unambiguously treated as an arm of the state by Pennsylvania, is an arm of Pennsylvania for purposes of federal law, or is instead an “independent political subdivision” as determined by the Fourth Circuit and its multifactor balancing test.
15-1044 Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency v. Pele Whether the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency, a statewide agency located in the capital and unambiguously treated as an arm of the state by Pennsylvania, is an arm of Pennsylvania for purposes of federal law, or is instead an “independent political subdivision” as determined by the Fourth Circuit and its multifactor balancing test.
15-1039 Sandoz Inc. v. Amgen Inc. (1) Whether notice of commercial marketing given before Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval can be effective; and (2) whether, in any event, it is improper to treat Section 262(l)(8)(A)—the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009's “Notice of commercial marketing” provision which states that a biosimilar applicant shall provide notice to the incumbent seller of the biological product “not later than 180 days before the date of the first commercial marketing of the biological product licensed under” an abbreviated pathway for biosimilars—as a stand-alone requirement and creating an injunctive remedy that delays all biosimilars by 180 days after approval.
15-830 Belize v. Belize Social Development Ltd. (1) Whether, under the doctrine of forum non conveniens, as applied to the New York Convention by Article III, a foreign forum is per se inadequate because specific assets in the United States cannot be attached by a foreign court, as the D.C. Circuit has held, or whether it is adequate if it has jurisdiction and some attachable assets, as the Second Circuit held; and (2) whether, under Article V(2)(b) of the New York Convention, the public policy in favor of arbitration yields where confirmation of an arbitral award would be contrary to countervailing public policies, such as those grounded in constitutional separation of powers principles, combating government corruption and/or international comity.
Term Snapshot
Awards