Supreme Court of the United States

The United States Supreme Court is the highest court of the United States and is charged with interpreting federal law, including the United States Constitution. The Court's docket is largely discretionary... more +
The United States Supreme Court is the highest court of the United States and is charged with interpreting federal law, including the United States Constitution. The Court's docket is largely discretionary with only a limited number of cases granted review each term.  The Court is comprised of one chief justice and eight associate justices, who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate to hold lifetime positions. less -
News & Analysis as of

Monthly Benefits Alert - June 2015

Supreme Court - As explained in more detail in separate alerts we issued over the past several days, the Supreme Court decided two major cases involving the Affordable Care Act and same-sex marriage. First, as described...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Against Abercrombie In Headscarf Religious Accommodation Case

The U.S. Supreme Court reinstated the EEOC’s lawsuit against Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc., alleging that Abercrombie violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by refusing to hire a Muslim applicant, who wore a...more

The U.S. Supreme Court Holds EPA Must Consider Costs in Deciding to Regulate Power Plants

The U.S. Supreme Court’s June 29th decision in Michigan v. EPA, taken together with another significant CAA opinion from last term, Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA, demonstrates the Court’s proclivity for subjecting...more

FMLA’s Expanded Definition of “Spouse” Now Effective in All States

As discussed in our prior article, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) promulgated a final rule on February 25, 2015 that, effective March 27, modified the federal Family and Medical Leave Act’s (FMLA) definition of “spouse”...more

Disparate Impact Survives—Court Outlines Limitations on Liability

On June 25, 2015, the US Supreme Court issued a decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, holding that disparate-impact claims are cognizable under the Fair Housing...more

U.S. Supreme Court: Attorney’s Fees Provisions Must be Strictly Construed

“Our basic point of reference when considering the award of attorney’s fees is the bedrock principle known as the American Rule: Each litigant pays his own attorney’s fees, win or lose, unless a statute or contract provides...more

Same-Sex Marriage Ruling - What Does It Mean for Employee Benefit Plans?

In a 5-4 decision announced last Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court held in Obergefell v. Hodges that all states are required to recognize same-sex marriages. This ruling follows the Supreme Court’s 2013 decision in U.S. v....more

Elimination of Rule 84 and Form 18 Could Increase Pleading Standards in Patent Cases

In an order issued in late April of this year, the U.S. Supreme Court, without comment, adopted changes to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that were approved in September by the Judicial Conference of the United States....more

Business As Usual: Supreme Court Upholds ACA Subsidies

The United States Supreme Court recently held in King v. Burwell that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) permits individuals to receive health insurance premium subsidies through federally-facilitated exchanges (in addition to...more

U.S. Supreme Court Issues Ruling Favorable To Employers Involved In Disparate-Impact Litigation

On June 25, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a 5 to 4 ruling in Texas Dep’t of Housing & Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., No. 13-1371 (2015). Now that the dust has settled from the Supreme Court’s...more

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Premium Subsidies on Federally Run Health Insurance Exchanges

On June 25, 2015, in a 6-3 majority opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed the availability of premium subsidies for health coverage purchased on Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance exchanges, regardless of whether...more

Don’t Mess with Texas — It Might Deny Your Specialty License Plate: A Review of the Supreme Court’s Decision in Walker v. Texas...

Don’t Mess with Texas — It Might Deny Your Specialty License Plate: A Review of the Supreme Court’s Decision in Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc. The Supreme Court of the United States...more

Meet the New Sharif: Bankruptcy Court Jurisdiction in the Wake of Wellness International

The 1978 Bankruptcy Code was hailed as a comprehensive bankruptcy overhaul, designed, in part, to eliminate the uncertainty as to which matters could be handled by a bankruptcy referee depending on the outcome of a summary...more

Same Sex Marriage: Effect on Benefits

The United States Supreme Court recently held in Obergefell v. Hodges http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-556_3204.pdf that all states must recognize and allow marriages between same sex partners. Depending on an...more

July Antitrust Bulletin

On June 29, 2015, Sysco Corp. announced that it was pulling the plug on its $3.5 billion proposed merger with US Foods Inc. The news comes less than a week after a Washington, D.C., federal judge concluded that the Federal...more

US Supreme Court Decision in Bank of America, N.A. v. Caulkett

In a 9-0 decision released on June 1, 2015, the US Supreme Court ruled, in Bank of America, N.A. v. Caulkett, 135 S. Ct. 1995 (2015), that a debtor in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding may not void a junior mortgage lien...more

Texas Specialty License Plates Ruled to be Government Speech by U.S. Supreme Court

No First Amendment Violation - The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, determined that specialty license plates issued per Texas’s statutory scheme convey government speech. As such, the Texas Department of Motor...more

Recent US Supreme Court Decision Impacts Affordable Housing Industry

On June 25, the US Supreme Court upheld a decision that the Fair Housing Act ("Act") includes disparate impact claims. In Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., the Supreme...more

EEOC’s Revised Pregnancy Guidance: Now, Just Barely More Flexible!

Last Thursday, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued its amended guidance on pregnancy discrimination and accommodation in light of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Young v. UPS, issued in March 2015. The...more

Back to the Drawing Board: Supreme Court Sets Aside EPA Regulations On Mercury Emissions from Power Plants

The Supreme Court on Monday dealt a setback to the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulation limiting mercury and other toxic emissions from power plants – the “mercury rule.” In Michigan v. Environmental Protection...more

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Disparate-Impact Claims in Fair Housing Act Cases

On June 25, 2015, in Texas Dep't of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, the U.S. Supreme Court held that a plaintiff may establish a prima facie case under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) on the basis...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - July 2015

Environmental and Policy Focus - BP pays record $18.7 billion to settle claims in Gulf oil spill Bloomberg - Jul 2: BP Plc reached a record $18.7 billion agreement to settle all federal and state claims from the 2010...more

US Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Same-Sex Marriage

Now that same-sex couples have the freedom to marry in every state, employers must consider whether plan amendments and administrative changes are necessary. On June 26, the US Supreme Court issued its landmark...more

Supreme Court Further Clarifies Stern v. Marshall

As we have previously discussed, the Supreme Court held in Stern v. Marshall that Congress did not have the authority under the Constitution to empower bankruptcy judges to decide legal claims that are based entirely on state...more

What Will Employers Likely See (or Not See) in the Wake of the Supreme Court's Same-Sex Marriage Decision?

Now that the hubbub surrounding the Supreme Court’s June 26 decision in the consolidated case of Obergefell v. Hodges has begun to level off, employers are wondering how the decision will impact their workplaces. (In case...more

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