Civil Procedure Indigenous Peoples

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U.S. Supreme Court to Consider Tribal Sovereign Immunity Issue Related to Individual Tribal Employees

The U.S. Supreme Court recently granted certiorari in Lewis v. Clarke, (No. 15-1500) addressing the issue of whether the sovereign immunity of an Indian Tribe bars individual-damages actions against tribal employees for torts...more

Georgia Supreme Court Rejects Attempts to Narrow State Payday Lending Act

Last week, in Western Sky Financial v. State of Georgia, the Georgia Supreme Court issued a decision rejecting challenges to the state's Payday Lending Act (the "Act") and affirming the denial of a motion to dismiss claims...more

North Carolina Federal Court Holds That Arbitration Clause Requiring Panel To Render A Decision Within 30 Days Is Not...

In July, a federal court in North Carolina held that an arbitration provision which required the arbitration panel to reach a decision within thirty days of their selection was not unconscionable. Arising out of a dispute...more

Gubernatorial Action that has Land Use Consequences is not a an Illegal Exercise of Legislative Power

On October 13, 2016, the Court of Appeal for the Third Appellate District affirmed a trial court’s decision to grant a demurrer filed on behalf of Governor Jerry Brown following his concurrence with the Secretary of the...more

SCOTUS to Decide if Sovereign Immunity of an Indian Tribe Bars Individual Damages Actions

The U.S. Supreme Court recently granted certiorari in Lewis v. Clarke. The Supreme Court will resolve a Circuit split about whether the sovereign immunity of an Indian Tribe bars individual-damages actions against tribal...more

Supreme Court Benches Dan Snyder’s Team

Last week the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Mr. Simon Tam’s arguments and review the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit’s majority decision striking as unconstitutional Lanham Act Section 2(a)’s bar against the...more

Eleventh Circuit Doubles Down On The Importance Of Selecting An Available Arbitration Forum

The Eleventh Circuit affirmed a district court’s denial of a motion to compel arbitration on the grounds that the designated forum in the arbitration agreement was both unavailable and integral to the agreement. Appellee...more

Supreme Court Set to Settle Dispute over Washington Redskins Trademark Registration

There has been another twist in the story of the long battle by Native American interest groups to obtain revocation of the U.S. registration of the infamous Washington Redskins trademark. This is another step in the 20-year...more

Supreme Court Update: Order List (9/26/16)

Greetings, Court fans! It's (still) the first Monday in October, which means the Supreme Court (and the Update) are back in action. Actually, The Eight dug in a bit last week, issuing cert grants from their September...more

Federal Court in North Carolina Holds That Impracticability of Arbitration Clause Which Required Decision Within 30 Days of...

Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise v. W.G. Yates & Sons Constr. Co., 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 86100 (W.D. NC July 1, 2016) - Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise (the “Casino”) contracted with joint general contractors, W.G. Yates...more

Supreme Court Corner: Q3 2016

CASES WE ARE WATCHING - Lee v. Tam TRADEMARK – Cert. Pending Pro-Football, Inc. v. Amanda Blackhorse, et al. TRADEMARK – Cert. Pending ISSUE: Whether the Lanham Act’s disparagement clause violates the...more

Arguing that CashCall was the "True Lender", CFPB Successfully Challenges High Interest Loan Program

On August 31, a federal district court in California ruled in favor of the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on the application of "true lender" principles in the context of a tribal lending arrangement. The...more

CFPB Prevails On Summary Judgment Against CashCall, Inc.

On August 31, 2016, in a ground breaking decision, the United States District Court in Los Angeles ruled that CashCall, Inc. violated the Consumer Financial Protection Act in connection with efforts to collect on certain...more

Ninth Circuit Finds That Removal of Action to Federal Court Does Not Waive Tribe's Sovereign Immunity

In a precedential opinion, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently chose to follow the lead of the Eleventh Circuit, holding that tribes do not waive sovereign immunity merely by removing a case to federal court. This...more

Court Decisions Define the Future for Tribal Gaming

Definitions and syntax. Not only on middle school quizzes, but also what determined the fate of the Mashpee Wampanoag and Cowlitz tribal casinos in Massachusetts and Washington, respectively. Two federal court decisions...more

Ninth Circuit Holds Air Emissions Not Covered by CERCLA

Decision finds operator of a lead and zinc smelter not liable as an “arranger” under CERCLA for aerial deposition of heavy metals. On July 27, a panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit unanimously held...more

Federal Court of Appeal: Government Failed to Adequately Consult with First Nations on Northern Gateway

On June 23, 2016, the Federal Court of Appeal delivered the Northern Gateway Project another procedural setback in its decision on Gitxaala Nation v Canada (2016 FCA 187). In a 2-to-1 split decision, the court overturned the...more

Supreme Court Declines to Consider Curtailing NLRB’s Authority over Michigan Tribal Casinos

Recently, two Michigan tribes petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court challenging the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) authority to regulate labor practices at their casinos. Unfortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to...more

No Budding in Line Washington Redskins

In a case with special significance to our DuetsBlog crew (our founder Steve Baird started the fight to cancel the THE REDSKINS trademark registrations in 1992 – see more about the Harjo case here) and significant to...more

Ninth Circuit Rules Tribal Treaty Rights Obligate State to Ensure Harvestable Fish Are Available

Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that the state of Washington violated tribal treaty obligations by building and maintaining barrier culverts that block 1,000 linear miles of streams suitable...more

Wyoming Federal Court Strikes Down BLM Fracking Rule

U.S. District Court Judge Scott Skavdahl in State of Wyoming et al v. U.S. Department if Interior et al. struck down Bureau of Land Management regulations applying to hydraulic fracking on federal and Indian lands. He...more

The Law on Tribal Court Jurisdiction over Non-Members Stands with Supreme Court’s Tied Vote in Dollar General Corp. v. Mississippi...

John Doe, a teenage member of the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, was working as an intern at a Dollar General store on the Tribe’s Reservation when he was sexually molested by the manager of the store. Doe sued Dollar...more

Court Strikes Down BLM Hydraulic Fracturing Rule

US District Court rejects US Bureau of Land Management’s rule regarding hydraulic fracturing operations on federal and Tribal lands. On June 21, 2016, the US District Court for the District of Wyoming (District Court)...more

Vermont federal district court rules CFPA does not provide private right of action for alleged usurious loans; denies motion to...

A Vermont federal district court recently issued a decision ruling on the defendants’ motion to dismiss a class action involving allegations that an online tribal lending venture violated federal and state law because of...more

Appellate Court Notes

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: SC19493 - Standard Oil of Connecticut, Inc. v. Administrator, Unemployment Compensation Act - SC19493 Dissent - Standard Oil of Connecticut, Inc. v. Administrator,...more

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