Month: April 2021

SCOTUS Opinion: Court Rejects Effectiveness Of Multipart Notices To Appear

Under the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996, Congress required the government to serve a notice to appear on any non-citizen it wishes to remove from the country. Under the Act, such a notice must be in writing and contain certain information, including any charges against the non-citizen, and the time and place of the removal proceedings ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Court Rejects Sex Offender’s Habeas Corpus Claim On Predicate State Conviction

  After Sean Wright was convicted for sexual abuse in Alaska’s state courts, he failed to register his sex offender status in Tennessee when he moved there after his Alaskan prison sentence ended, in violation of federal law. During the federal proceedings, Wright filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus in Alaska, arguing that his Sixth Amendment rights were ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Federal Trade Commission Act Does Not Permit Awards Of Monetary Relief

In AMG Capital Management, LLC v. FTC, the Federal Trade Commission sued Scott Tucker and his companies for deceptive payday lending practices in violation of the Federal Trade Commission Act. The district court granted an injunction to stop further such practices, and also invoked Section 13(b) of the Act to order Tucker to pay $1.27 billion in restitution and disgorgement ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Social Security Administration Administrative Law Judges Subject To Appointments Clause Challenges

In Carr v. Saul, individuals who were denied Social Security benefits after determinations by the SSA’s administrative law judges (ALJs) sought to challenge those results by arguing that the ALJs were not properly appointed under the Appointments Clause of the Constitution as analyzed under Lucia v. SEC, 585 U.S. ___ (2018), which held that SEC ALJs appointed similarly to the ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Juvenile Murderers Face Life In Prison Without Parole Even If Not Deemed Permanently Incorrigible

  Brett Jones was 15 when he murdered his grandfather. Under Mississippi law at the time, he received a mandatory sentence of life without parole. Then, in Miller v. Alabama, 567 U.S 460 (2012), the Supreme Court held that a juvenile can only be sentenced to life without parole if there was discretion to impose a lesser punishment. Upon reconsideration, the ... Read More

Employer-Mandated COVID-19 Vaccines: Tips, Pitfalls, and Other Considerations

President Joe Biden recently announced that all adult Americans will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine by April 19. That day has arrived, and all 50 states now allow all adults age 16 and older to register for the vaccine. As the pace of vaccinations continues to accelerate, and case numbers appear to be stable in most regions of the ... Read More

Client Alert: Canova Land and Investment Company v. Carolyn Lynn

This morning, the Supreme Court of Virginia interpreted a restriction contained within a 146-year-old deed as not being an unreasonable restraint on alienation. In Canova Land and Investment Company v. Carolyn Lynn, the Supreme Court analyzed whether ancient deed restrictions, undiscovered by a subsequent lender, vitiate the security for its loan. In 1875, Edna and Levi Lynn granted a deed to ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Court Lifts Restrictions On In-Home Religious Gatherings

As part of its effort to combat COVID-19, California enacted a policy limiting in-home religious gatherings to no more than three households. Several California pastors filed suit and asked that the courts enter an injunction preventing the application of the policy as a violation of their First Amendment religious rights. The district court and the Ninth Circuit rejected the application, ... Read More

Client Alert: Wilson v. Eagle National Bank

The United States District Court for the District of Maryland has allowed a complaint alleging Sherman Act violations by a lender in purported conspiracy with its internal title company and competitor title company to proceed. In Wilson v. Eagle National Bank, the Court held that allegations of horizontal price-fixing in title and settlement services, if proven true, constitute per se ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Google Allowed Fair Use Of Oracle’s Java Code

After Google acquired Android, it copied about 11,500 lines of Oracle’s Java SE code without Oracle’s permission so that programmers could use it to develop apps for Android phones. Oracle filed suit arguing that Google violated its copyrights over that code. The Federal Circuit held that the copied lines were copyrightable under the Copyright Act, and reversed a jury’s determination ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Facebook’s Security Feature Not A Prohibited Autodialer

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 prohibits telemarketers from using autodialers, which “store or produce telephone numbers to be called, using a random or sequential number generator,” and then dial those numbers. Meanwhile, Facebook has a security feature that automatically texts a phone number associated with an account if that account is accessed from a new device or browser ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Court Re-Institutes Federal Communications Commission’s Repeal Of Media Ownership Rules

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 requires the FCC to review its rules restricting entities from owning multiple media outlets every four years to ensure that competition, localism, and viewpoint diversity were promoted. In 2017, the FCC determined that three of its rules were no longer necessary to promote those values, and that repealing the rules would likely not harm minority ... Read More

SCOTUS Opinion: Georgia Prevails In Dispute Over Water Rights

The interstate rivers that make up the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River Basin flow from Georgia into Florida. Florida claimed that its upstream neighbor was consuming too much of the Basin waters, resulting in downstream harm to Florida’s oyster fisheries and wildlife. The Special Master appointed to the case originally recommended dismissal of Florida’s claim for lack of redressability, but the Court requested ... Read More

Client Alert: A New Holding in the Court of Appeals of Maryland That May Affect Enforcement of Condominium Liens

Earlier this week, the Court of Appeals of Maryland held that condominium liens perfected under the Maryland Contract Lien Act cannot secure unpaid amounts which accrue subsequent to the recordation of the lien. In in re Anthony D. Walker, the Court answered a certified question from the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland which had grappled with ... Read More