This edition of “Petitions to Watch” features cases up for consideration at the Justices’ private conference on January 16. As always, the list contains the petitions on the Court’s paid docket that Tom has deemed to have a reasonable chance of being granted. (Thanks to Max Schwartz for assistance in compiling this week’s list.) To access previous editions of Petitions to Watch, including the list for the upcoming conference of January 9, visit our archives on SCOTUSwiki.

Going forward, to avoid any appearance of handicapping our own petitions, this feature will separately list any cases in which lawyers from Akin Gump or Howe & Russell represent the lead parties, regardless of Tom’s opinion as to their likelihood of being granted. To see the full list of petitions on our watch list, continue reading after the jump.

Conference of January 16, 2008

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Docket: 08-362
Title: Illinois v. Lopez
Issue: Whether a person who voluntarily accompanies police to the station for questioning and is left in a closed room while the police verify the information provided is considered “seized” under the Fourth Amendment, whether a court can consider a defendant’s age and experience with law enforcement when making that determination, and what standard apply courts should apply when determining whether police deliberately wait to administer Miranda warnings until after a confession is obtained.

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Docket: 08-453
Title: Cuomo v. The Clearing House Ass’n, L.L.C.,
Issue: Whether 12 USC § 484 and 12 CFR § 7.4000 prohibit measures taken by the New York State Attorney General to enforce state fair lending law against national banks by subjecting those entities to “visitorial powers.”

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Docket: 08-467
Title: Doe v. Department of Veterans Affairs
Issue: Whether the Privacy Act bars an agency official from disclosing personal information about an individual if that information was retrieved from the disclosing official’s memory and not by checking a system of records.

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Docket: 08-479
Title: Safford United School District #1 v. Redding
Issue: Whether the Fourth Amendment prohibits public school officials from conducting a strip search of a student suspected of possessing and distributing a prescription drug on campus in violation of school policy.

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Docket: 08-511
Title: U.S., ex rel. Feingold v. Palmetto Gov’t Benefits Adm’rs
Issue: Whether the Eleventh Circuit correctly decided that a provision granting immunity to Medicare carriers for any payment that is processed on behalf of the government barred a qui tam suit.

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Docket: 08-528
Title: Florida v. Young
Issue: Whether the exclusionary rules requires evidence seized by law enforcement to be suppressed when the search is conducted at the request of, and with the consent of, the defendant’s private employer after the employer has discovered illegal activity.

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Docket: 08-592
Title: Schubert v. Pleasant Glade Assembly of God
Issue: Whether the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment bars the imposition of civil liability for religious conduct, such as “the laying on of hands,” (often known as an exorcism) that causes mental distress to the subject of such conduct.

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Docket: 08-660
Title: U.S. ex rel. Eisenstein v. City of New York
Issue: Whether the 30-day time limit in Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure 4(a)(1)(A) for filing a notice of appeal, or the 60-day time limit in Rule 4(a)(1)(B), applies to a qui tam action under the False Claims Act.

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Cases involving lawyers from Akin Gump or Howe & Russell (listed without regard to likelihood of being granted):

Docket: 08-626
Title: Level 3 Communications, LLC v. City of St. Louis, Missouri
Issue: Whether local governments’ fees and restrictions on telecommunication carriers’ access to public rights-of-way are not preempted by federal law as long as they do not effectively preclude the provision of telecommunications services. (Akin Gump represents the petitioner.)

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Docket: 08-645
Title: Abbott v. Abbott
Issue: Whether a ne exeat clause confers a “right of custody” within the meaning of the Hague Convention on International Child Abduction. (Howe & Russell represents the petitioner.)

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