Breaking News

Petitions of the week

This week we highlight petitions pending before the Supreme Court that address, among other things, the reach of the Clean Water Act’s permitting requirement, the constitutionality of establishing personal jurisdiction over a defendant based on the contacts of a defendant’s alleged co-conspirators, and the categorical classification of an indivisible state statute that criminalizes false agency endorsement.

The petitions of the week are:

Disclosure: Vinson & Elkins LLP, whose attorneys contribute to this blog in various capacities, is counsel to the petitioner in this case.

Issue: Whether the due process clause permits a court to exercise personal jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant based on the contacts of the defendant’s alleged co-conspirators with the forum state, as the court below held; or whether the due process analysis looks only to the defendant’s own contacts with the forum state and not those of alleged co-conspirators, as the Nebraska and Texas Supreme Courts have held.


Issue: Whether Section 102(c) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act—which grants the Secretary of Homeland Security sweeping power to waive any or all legal requirements in her sole discretion, and then insulates that exercise of discretion from judicial review—violates the separation of powers.


Issues: (1) Whether the Clean Water Act requires a permit when pollutants originate from a point source but are conveyed to navigable waters by a nonpoint source, such as groundwater; and (2) whether the County of Maui had fair notice that a Clean Water Act permit was required for its underground injection control wells that operated without such a permit for nearly 40 years.


Issues: (1) Whether the Clean Water Act’s permitting requirement is confined to discharges from a point source to navigable waters, or whether it also applies to discharges into soil or groundwater whenever there is a “direct hydrological connection” between the groundwater and nearby navigable waters; and (2) whether an “ongoing violation” of the Clean Water Act exists for purposes of the act’s citizen-suit provision when a point source has permanently ceased discharging pollutants, but some of the pollutants are still reaching navigable water through groundwater.


Issue: Whether an indivisible state statute that criminalizes false agency endorsement is categorically “an offense relating to … forgery” and thus an aggravated felony.


Recommended Citation: Aurora Barnes, Petitions of the week, SCOTUSblog (Sep. 25, 2018, 11:13 AM),