Willamette Law Online

United States Supreme Court


( 7 summaries )


Daimler AG v. Bauman

Civil Procedure: Petitioner is not answerable to a suit in California for injuries which occurred outside of the United States.

(Filing Date: 01-14-2014)

Mississippi ex rel. Hood v. AU Optronics Corp.

Civil Procedure: A suit filed by a State on behalf of the State and their citizens where the State is the only named party in the suit does not constitute a “mass action” under the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005.

(Filing Date: 01-14-2014)

Ray Haluch Gravel Co. v. Central Pension Fund of Operating Engineers and Participating Employers

Attorney Fees: A judgment on the merits is final even if the amount or award of attorneys' fees is still pending.

(Filing Date: 01-15-2014)

Medtronic, Inc. v. Merowski Family Ventures, LLC

Civil Procedure: The burden of persuasion in a declaratory judgment action stemming from a patent infringement suit is on the patentee.

(Filing Date: 01-22-2014)

Air Wisconsin Airlines Corp. v. Hoeper

Qualified Immunity: Under the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA), immunity is not granted when airlines and their employees provide materially false disclosures about suspicious behavior.

(Filing Date: 01-27-2014)

Burrage v. United States

Sentencing: A drug distributed by a defendant must be the "but-for" cause of death or serious injury before that defendant can be liable under the Controlled Substances Act’s penalty enhancement provision.

(Filing Date: 01-27-2014)

Sandifer v United States Steel Corporation

Labor Law: The time spent putting on protective gear before work qualifies as "changing clothes" under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938.

(Filing Date: 01-27-2014)

( 5 summaries )


Fernandez v. California

Criminal Procedure: An objecting occupant does not have the Fourth Amendment right to suspend all searches of a residence when another occupant consents to the search. The objecting occupant must be at the residence to assert their Fourth Amendment right.

(Filing Date: 02-25-2014)

Kaley v. United States

Criminal Procedure: A criminal defendant who is indicted does not have the constitutional right to challenge a grand jury's finding of probable cause.

(Filing Date: 02-25-2014)

Walden v. Fiore

Civil Procedure: The drafting of a false affidavit of probable cause in Georgia which concerned property owned by Nevada residents was insufficient to establish the "minimum contacts" necessary for a Nevada court to exercise personal jurisdiction over a Georgia defendant.

(Filing Date: 02-25-2014)

Chadbourne & Parke LLP v. Troice

Civil Procedure: The Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act of 1998 does not preclude the Respondents' state-law class actions alleging that the Petitioners assisted in carrying out a Ponzi scheme by alleging that the uncovered securities that plaintiffs purchased were protected by covered securities.

(Filing Date: 02-26-2014)

United States v. Apel

Property Law: For 18 U.S.C. § 1382 purposes, a military installation includes the commanding officer's area of responsibility.

(Filing Date: 02-26-2014)

( 9 summaries )


Lawson v. FMR LLC

Employment Law: The whistleblower protection provision of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act shelters employees of private contractors and subcontractors.

(Filing Date: 03-04-2014)

Law v. Siegel

Bankruptcy Law: Bankruptcy courts may only disallow statutory exemptions if permitted by statute, and lack any statutory or inherent power to directly or indirectly disallow exemptions by contradicting specific statutes.

(Filing Date: 03-04-2014)

BG Group plc v. Argentina

Arbitration: When a United States court reviews an arbitration award under the Treaty, the provisions of the arbitration and award should be examined under the principles of contract law.

(Filing Date: 03-05-2014)

Lozano v. Montoya Alvarez

Family Law: Equitable tolling is unavailable under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction even when the child's whereabouts is concealed.

(Filing Date: 03-05-2014)

Rosemond v. United States

Criminal Law: A defendant is guilty of aiding and abetting under §924(c) when the defendant actively participates in the commission of a crime, and when the defendant has advance knowledge that a gun will be used in a crime.

(Filing Date: 03-05-2014)

Marvin M. Brandt Revocable Trust v United States

Property Law: The right of way granted under the Right-of-Way Act of 1875 is an easement and thus, when abandoned by the Railroad, the easement is terminated.

(Filing Date: 03-10-2014)

United States v. Quality Stores, Inc., Et. al.

Tax Law: Severance payments are taxable wages under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act.

(Filing Date: 03-25-2014)

United States v. James Alvin Castleman

Criminal Law: A conviction for misdemeanor domestic assault by intentionally or knowingly causing bodily injury to a parent of his/her child qualifies as a conviction for a "misdemeanor crime of domestic violence."

(Filing Date: 03-26-2014)

( 9 summaries )


McCutcheon et al v. Federal Election Commission

Election Law: The aggregate limit provision of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971(as amended by the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002) that put limits on how much total money a contributor can donate to all federal candidates violates First Amendment protection for political expression and political association.

(Filing Date: 04-02-2014)

Northwest, Inc. v. Ginsberg

Preemption: The Airline Deregulation Act of 1978 preempts state common law provisions that expand the scope of the contract rights between airlines and air passengers.

(Filing Date: 04-02-2014)

Navarette v. California

Criminal Procedure: An anonymous call can provide officers with reasonable suspicion to make an investigatory stop of a person driving under the influence when the caller has a sufficient eyewitness basis of knowledge.

(Filing Date: 04-22-2014)

Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration and Immigration Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary (BAMN)

Constitutional Law: Michigan's constitutional amendment banning discrimination on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in public employment, education, and contracting is upheld.

(Filing Date: 04-22-2014)

Paroline v. United States

Remedies: Restitution for victims of child pornography is proper under §2259, and determined on a case-by-case basis, compensating victims to the extend that the defendant proximately caused the victim's losses.

(Filing Date: 04-23-2014)

White v. Woodall

Sentencing: For a federal court to grant habeas corpus relief to a defendant, the previous state court's decision must involve an objectively unreasonable application of established federal law.

(Filing Date: 04-23-2014)

Environmental Protection Agency v. EME Homer City Generation

Administrative Law: The Environmental Protection Agency's interpretation of the Clean Air Act and the regulations promulgated in furtherance of that act are reasonable and subject to deference.

(Filing Date: 04-29-2014)

Highmark Inc. v. Allcare Health Management System, Inc.

Appellate Procedure: An appellate court should review all aspects of a district court’s §285 determination for abuse of discretion only.

(Filing Date: 04-29-2014)

Octane Fitness, LLC. v. ICON Health & Fitness, Inc.

Patents: The Brooks Furniture framework is unduly rigid and inconsistent with the statutory text of 35 U.S.C. § 285.

(Filing Date: 04-29-2014)

( 9 summaries )


Robers v. United States

Sentencing: When the "property" covered by The Mandatory Victims Restitution Act is money used to acquire collateral, the value of the collateral at the time of sale must be used in determining the offset.

(Filing Date: 05-05-2014)

Tolan v. Cotton

Qualified Immunity: When ruling on a motion for summary judgment in cases dealing with qualified immunity, courts must weigh the evidence and all justifiable inferences in the nonmoving party’s favor.

(Filing Date: 05-05-2014)

Town of Greece, New York v. Galloway, et al.

First Amendment: There is no violation of the First Amendment's Establishment Clause when a town meeting is opened with a prayer, given the precedence in legislative history.

(Filing Date: 05-05-2014)

Petrella v. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.

Civil Procedure: Where Congress has provided a statute of limitations under Section 507(b) of the Copyright Act, the defense of laches is only available in extraordinary circumstances.

(Filing Date: 05-19-2014)

Hall v. Florida

Sentencing: An IQ threshold requirement, which bars a defendant from presenting intellectual disability evidence, is unconstitutional when that requirement disregards established medical practice, ignores inherent imprecision of an IQ test, and is inconsistent with the majority of the States’ legislation.

(Filing Date: 05-27-2014)

Martinez v. Illinois

Criminal Procedure: Jeopardy attaches when a jury is empanelled and sworn, thus a not-guilty verdict cannot be appealed without subjecting a defendant to double jeopardy.

(Filing Date: 05-27-2014)

Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community

Tribal Law: The Indian Gambling Regulatory Act does not abrogate tribal sovereign immunity when gaming activities are conducted off of Indian land.

(Filing Date: 05-27-2014)

Plumhoff v. Rickard

Qualified Immunity: (1) A party may immediately appeal the denial of a summary judgment motion when it is based on a qualified immunity claim. (2) Qualified immunity applies to officials sued under § 1983 unless the claimant shows that the official violated a “clearly established” statutory or constitutional right.

(Filing Date: 05-27-2014)

Wood v. Moss

Qualified Immunity: There is no "clearly established" law that ensures that groups with different viewpoints are positioned similarly when presidential safety is at issue.

(Filing Date: 05-27-2014)

( 24 summaries )


Bond v. United States

Criminal Law: 18 U.S.C. §229(a) does not reach crimes like simple assault due to state sovereignty.

(Filing Date: 06-02-2014)

Limelight Networks, Inc v. Akamai Technologies, Inc.

Patents: A defendant is not liable for inducing patent infringement when there has been no direct infringement upon the patent.

(Filing Date: 06-02-2014)

Nautilus, Inc. v. Biosig Instruments, Inc.

Patents: A patent’s indefiniteness renders it invalid if its claims fail to inform skilled artisans about the scope of the invention with reasonable certainty.

(Filing Date: 06-02-2014)

CTS Corp. v. Waldburger

Civil Procedure: Section 9658 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 preempts state statutes of limitations, but does not preempt state statutes of repose.

(Filing Date: 06-09-2014)

Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison

Bankruptcy Law: When hearing a Stern claim — certain "core" bankruptcy claims over which bankruptcy courts lack the power to grant final adjudications — bankruptcy courts may issue proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law for district courts to review de novo.

(Filing Date: 06-09-2014)

Scialabba v. Cuellar de Osorio, et. al.

Immigration: The Board of Immigration Appeals interpretation of the Child Status Protection Act (CSPA), which limits the automatic conversion of visa priority dates of visa petition derivative beneficiaries upon aging out, is reasonable as the Board is entitled to Chevron deference.

(Filing Date: 06-09-2014)

Clark v. Rameker

Bankruptcy Law: Funds contained in an inherited individual retirement account are not considered “retirement funds” for purposes of the bankruptcy exemption.

(Filing Date: 06-12-2014)

POM Wonderful LLC v. Coca-Cola Co.

Administrative Law: When a federal statute, such as the Lanham Act, is complementary with a federal statute, such as the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and neither explicitly provide otherwise, there is no preclusion.

(Filing Date: 06-12-2014)

Abramski v. United States

Criminal Law: Misrepresentations on Question 11.a on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives form 4473 for gun ownership are material to violating §922(a)(6), lawful sale of a gun.

(Filing Date: 06-16-2014)

Republic of Argentina v. NML Capital, Ltd.

Sovereign Immunity: The Federal Sovereign Immunities Act does not protect sovereign debtors against postjudgment discovery.

(Filing Date: 06-16-2014)

Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus

Constitutional Law: When determining if a party meets Article III standing requirements, a credible threat of enforcement meets the injury in fact portion of the standing requirements.

(Filing Date: 06-16-2014)

Alice Corporation PTY. LTD. v. CLS Bank International et al.

Patents: When a patent is drawn to an abstract idea, the idea is not eligible for patent protection.

(Filing Date: 06-19-2014)

Lane v. Franks

First Amendment: Truthful subpoenaed testimony by public employees is protected speech under the First Amendment and government officials are entitled to qualified immunity for violating statutory or constitutional rights that are not clearly established.

(Filing Date: 06-19-2014)

United States v. Clarke

Tax Law: A taxpayer has the right to challenge the Internal Revenue Service’s reasons for issuing a summons when that taxpayer offers credible evidence to support a plausible charge.

(Filing Date: 06-19-2014)

Halliburton Co. et al. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc., FKA Archdiocese of Milwaukee Supporting Fund, Inc.

Corporations: When investors can prove their reliance on a business' misrepresentation in determining whether to buy or sell company stock, investors can recover damages in a private securities fraud action.

(Filing Date: 06-23-2014)

Loughrin v. United States

Criminal Law: 18 U.S.C. §1344(2) does not require the government to prove that a defendant intended to defraud a financial institution.

(Filing Date: 06-23-2014)

Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency et al.

Environmental Law: EPA cannot treat greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act as a pollutant, unless the source is required to obtain a permit because it emits other pollutants.

(Filing Date: 06-23-2014)

American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. v. Aereo, Inc.

Copyright: Under the language and purpose of the Copyright Act of 1976, contemporaneous transmission of broadcast television signals over the Internet are public performances whenever the signals are made available to the public.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2014)

Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer

Corporations: There is no "presumption of prudence" for an Employee Stock Ownership Plan fiduciary; they are subject only to the duty of prudence that applies to all ERISA fiduciaries in general, with the exception of the diversification requirement.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2014)

Riley v. California

Criminal Procedure: Police may not search an arrested individual’s cell phone data without a warrant.

(Filing Date: 06-25-2014)

McCullen v. Coakley

Constitutional Law: Banning the presence of all but an exempt few from the area around the entrances to reproductive health facilities unconstitutionally burdens the public's First Amendment rights.

(Filing Date: 06-26-2014)

National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning et al.

Constitutional Law: When there is a vacancy, the Recess Appointment Clause enables the President to appoint an officer to the vacancy if the Senate is in recess, but not when the Senate is not officially adjourned.

(Filing Date: 06-26-2014)

Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc.

First Amendment: The contraceptive coverage mandate of the Affordable Care Act substantially burdens a closely held corporation's free exercise of religion under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

(Filing Date: 06-30-2014)

Harris v. Quinn

Constitutional Law: The First Amendment prohibits collecting an agency fee from non-public employees who do not support or wish to join a union.

(Filing Date: 06-30-2014)

( 1 summary )


Williams v. Johnson

Habeas Corpus: The appropriate standard of review when a state court overlooks a federal claim is the standard set forth in 28 § U.S.C. 2254(d).

(Filing Date: 07-01-2014)