Administrative Procedure Act

News & Analysis as of

DC Circuit Ruling Threatens to Topple FERC Tax Allowance Policy

Court rules that FERC policy permitting a tax allowance for pass-through entities may unjustifiably permit “double-recovery” of tax expense. On July 1, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued...more

Regulated Parties – 2, Regulators – 0

The United States Supreme Court has handed regulated parties their second win in four years concerning when they can take EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to court over wetlands permitting issues. In 2012, the...more

Environmental Notes - July 2016

CONGRESS FINDS THE FORMULA TO REFORM CHEMICAL REGULATION - The Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) is the primary federal law by which the manufacture, import and use of chemical substances are regulated in the United...more

DC Court Confirms EPA May Reverse Its Position On Permit Issuance

In the latest installment in this long-running dispute, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit today, in Mingo Logan Coal Company v. EPA, ruled, in a 2 to 1 decision, that EPA satisfied its duties under the Clean Water...more

OSHA Postpones Its New Workplace Injury and Illness Reporting Rule in the Face of Scrutiny and a New Lawsuit

Over the past few months, we have published articles related to the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) publication of amendments related to its workplace injury and illness...more

EPA Issues “Catch-Up” Adjustments for Federal Civil Penalties

On July 1, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued in the Federal Register an interim final rule adjusting penalty amounts for Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) violations by more...more

OSHA, EPA and DOI Increase Maximum Civil Penalties

This summer, many federal agencies increased civil monetary penalties as much as 150 percent in response to new legislation mandating that federal agencies "catch up" with inflation and remedy past government failures to...more

The Administrative Procedure Act - Challenging FBAR Penalties

Over the past 10 years, thousands of U.S. taxpayers with a wide variety of circumstances have been forced to pay extraordinarily high penalties for failure to disclose foreign bank accounts. For years, tax experts said that...more

Court Holds that Stale Permits May Automatically Terminate if Permitting Laws are Not Faithfully Followed

On July 7, the U.S. District Court for Alaska decided the case of Castle Mountain Coalition, et al., v. Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, alaskaholding that a mining permit issued under the Surface Mining...more

The Freedom of Information Act Amended: Process and Pitfalls

On June 30, 2016, President Obama signed into law the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016, Pub. L. No. 114-185, which made significant changes to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. § 552, et seq. (“FOIA”). FOIA can be a great...more

No Texas Hold ‘Em: Fifth Circuit Allows Texas to Challenge the EEOC Enforcement Guidance

A somewhat surprising decision in favor of the State of Texas was handed down from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals on June 27, 2016, which held that (i) Texas had standing to challenge the Equal Employment Opportunity...more

DOJ Doubles FCA Civil Penalties

As required by last November's Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, the Department of Justice on June 30 released an interim final rule making inflationary adjustments to civil monetary penalties under its jurisdiction, including...more

Controversy Over Interior’s Trust Authority in Alaska Remains Unresolved

A majority panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit recently dismissed the State of Alaska’s challenge to the U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s authority to acquire land in trust for Alaska...more

Wetlands Determinations - Uncertainty for the Clean Water Rule?

On May 31, 2016, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in United States Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes Co., Inc. holding that approved judicial determinations as to the presence of wetlands issued by the...more

NLRB’s “Quickie” Election Rule Upheld

Last month, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the lower court’s decision upholding the National Labor Relations Board’s “quickie” election rule. As we previously reported, the final rule,...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - June 2016

Editor's Overview - In this month’s newsletter, our colleagues focus on two sets of legislative updates. First is a discussion of the IRS’s proposed Treasury Regulations prescribing rules under Section 457 of the...more

DC Court: EEOC Guidance Final Action Subject to Review in Federal Court

A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit is a reminder to important federal agencies that they must take care to adhere to the requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) when they issue...more

PTAB Can Rely Upon Prior Art Not Cited in an IPR Institution Decision to Establish the State of Art

The Federal Circuit affirmed the PTAB’s final determination in Genzyme Therapeutic Products Limited Partnership v. Biomarin Pharmaceutical Inc., Nos. 2015-1720, 2015-1721 (Fed. Cir. June 14, 2016), holding that the PTAB did...more

The Supreme Court - June 2016 #6

The Supreme Court of the United States issued decisions in five cases on June 23, 2016: Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, No. 14-981: Petitioner Abigail Fisher applied for admission to the University of Texas at...more

Litigation Alert: Supreme Court Leaves Intact PTAB Authority to Institute and Regulate Inter Partes Review Proceedings

This week in Cuozzo Speed Technologies, LLC v. Lee, the United States Supreme Court decided two important questions related to the power of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) over inter partes review proceedings. First,...more

SCOTUS Gives Landowners New Tools to Challenge Wetlands Permitting Decisions

The United States Supreme Court handed landowners and developers a win this month in a unanimous decision allowing appeals to federal courts of Army Corps of Engineers determinations that a body of water or wetland is subject...more

Industry Organizations Sue to Prevent Enforcement of the Fiduciary Rule

The Department of Labor’s (“Department”) Fiduciary Rule and related Best Interest Contract Exemption and Prohibited Transaction Exemption amendments (collectively, the “Regulatory Package”) have faced significant resistance...more

Federal Circuit Rules That PTAB May Base AIA Trial Decision on Facts Outside Petition for Review

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently affirmed a decision by the USPTO Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) invalidating two patents after an inter partes review proceeding, even though the decision...more

Immigration Showdown: Defeat for the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action Policies

On Thursday, June 23, 2016, the Supreme Court of the United States reached a 4 – 4 tie on issues related to the validity of the Obama administration’s contested immigration programs, Deferred Action for Parents of Americans...more

New House Bill Would Overturn Chevron Doctrine and End Judicial Deference Provided to Regulatory Agencies

On June 8, 2016, the House Judiciary Committee approved legislation by a vote of 12-8 that would overturn a widely cited legal doctrine and end the practice of courts deferring to federal agencies’ interpretations of...more

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