Michael Tonn

9th Circuit Court of Appeals (16 summaries)

SEIU v. NUHW

Section 501 of the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act creates a fiduciary duty to the union as an organization, not just to the union’s rank-and-file members, and union officials who divert union resources for the purposes of establishing a new competing local union violate their fiduciary duties to the organization itself.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Labor Law

SOFA Entertainment v. Dodger Productions

The “fair use” doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 17 protects the use of a short television clip in an autobiographical production when use of the clip is for historical significance and its use does not usurp the demand for the original clip.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Copyright

United States v. Jesus-Casteneda

“A confidential informant’s testimony at trial in a wig-and-mustache disguise did not violate the Confrontation Clause, where the disguise was necessary to further the witness’s safety and the reliability of his testimony was otherwise assured.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Evidence

DC Comics v. Pacific Pictures

An order denying a defendant’s motion to strike state law claims under California’s anti-SLAPP statute is immediately appealable because the statute grants immunity from suit, not merely a defense to liability.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Civil Procedure

Pechenkov v. Holder

8 C.F.R. § 208.24(a)(2) is constitutional because it simply implements Congress's intent as expressed under 8 U.S.C. § 1158(c)(2) that an alien who has been granted asylum may have that status revoked after committing a serious crime, regardless of an application for withholding of removal.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Immigration

United States v. Johnson

A court may impose a condition on supervised release for convictions that include similar factors or aspects from a defendant’s prior convictions if such a condition would protect the public and help to rehabilitate the defendant.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Parole and Post-Prison Supervision

United States v. Jones

State recidivism enhancements may be considered under federal sentencing guidelines when determining felony convictions in supervised release revocation proceedings, even if the violation would be considered a misdemeanor without the recidivism enhancements.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Sentencing

Frankl v. HTH Corporation

A party to labor negotiations must bargain in good faith, and cannot be allowed to profit from its own wasteful and unlawful activities that hinder the bargaining process.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Labor Law

Costa v. Commissioner SSA

A judge is required to give specific justifications for reducing lawyer fee awards when such reductions are a sizable amount of the final award, contrary to informal policies stating otherwise and regardless of the routine nature of the case.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Attorney Fees

Scotts Company v. Seeds, Inc.

When a federal court evaluates realigning the parties in a case, it may not consider claims made in a different case for purposes of dismissing or staying the proceeding.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Civil Procedure

International Rehabilitative Sciences v. Sebelius

Deference is given to the highest level of agency adjudication in regards to whether a new device is considered “reasonable and necessary” as to be covered under Medicare, if the adjudication is not arbitrary or capricious.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Insurance Law

United States v. Gonzalez

Venue is proper in any location where acts or communications take place that further a conspiracy, regardless of the knowledge by the co-conspirators of the locations of their co-conspirators.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

United States v. Johnson

To obtain a conviction for knowingly making a false statement with respect to information required to be kept by a federally licensed firearms dealer under 18 U.S.C. § 924(a)(1)(A), the government need not prove that “the falsehood pertains to the lawfulness of the sale to the ultimate recipient.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

Estate of Morgens v. CIR

“Gift taxes paid by the donee trustees of a Qualifying Terminable Interest in Property (QTIP) trust, based on a 26 U.S.C. § 2519 deemed inter vivos transfer of the QTIP property within three years of the donor’s death, must be included in the transferor’s gross estate under the so-called “gross-up rule” of § 2035(b).”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Trusts and Estates

Samper v. Providence St. Vincent

Where a job requires an employee’s on-site presence to maintain other essential functions, like teamwork or face-to-face interactions with patients, regular attendance is an essential function of employment, and therefore cannot be exempted by a disability accommodation.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Disability Law

Alliance For The Wild Rockies v. Salazar

Congress does not violate the separation of powers doctrine when it changes the particular law applicable to pending litigation, as long as the amendment does not direct the court to make particular findings of fact or to order certain outcomes.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Constitutional Law