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October Term 2019

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Merits cases (to be) decided during OT 2018
Allen v. Cooper, No. 18-877

Issue(s): Whether Congress validly abrogated state sovereign immunity via the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act in providing remedies for authors of original expression whose federal copyrights are infringed by states.
Altitude Express Inc. v. Zarda, No. 17-1623

Issue(s): Whether the prohibition in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2(a)(1), against employment discrimination “because of . . . sex” encompasses discrimination based on an individual’s sexual orientation.
Atlantic Richfield Co. v. Christian, No. 17-1498

Issue(s): (1) Whether a common-law claim for restoration seeking cleanup remedies that conflict with remedies the Environmental Protection Agency ordered is a jurisdictionally barred “challenge” to the EPA’s cleanup under 42 U.S.C. § 9613 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act; (2) whether a landowner at a Superfund site is a “potentially responsible party” that must seek EPA approval under 42 U.S.C. § 9622(e)(6) of CERCLA before engaging in remedial action, even if the EPA has never ordered the landowner to pay for a cleanup; and (3) whether CERCLA pre-empts state common-law claims for restoration that seek cleanup remedies that conflict with EPA-ordered remedies. CVSG: 04/30/2019.
Barton v. Barr, No. 18-725

Issue(s): Whether a lawfully admitted permanent resident who is not seeking admission to the United States can be “render[ed] ... inadmissible” for the purposes of the stop-time rule, 8 U.S.C. § 1229b(d)(1).
Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia, No. 17-1618

Issue(s): Whether discrimination against an employee because of sexual orientation constitutes prohibited employment discrimination “because of . . . sex” within the meaning of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-2.
CITGO Asphalt Refining Co. v. Frescati Shipping Co., Ltd., No. 18-565

Issue(s): Whether under federal maritime law a safe-berth clause in a voyage charter contract is a guarantee of a ship‘s safety, as the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 2nd and 3rd Circuits have held, or a duty of due diligence, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit has held.
Comcast Corp. v. National Association of African American-Owned Media, No. 18-1171

Issue(s): Whether a claim of race discrimination under 42 U.S.C. § 1981 fails in the absence of but-for causation.
County of Maui, Hawaii v. Hawaii Wildlife Fund, No. 18-260

Issue(s): (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. CVSG: 01/03/2018.
Gray v. Wilkie, No. 17-1679

Issue(s): Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has jurisdiction under 38 U.S.C. § 502 to review an interpretive rule reflecting the Department of Veterans Affairs’ definitive interpretation of its own regulation, even if the VA chooses to promulgate that rule through its adjudication manual.
Hernandez v. Mesa, No. 17-1678

Issue(s): Whether, when the plaintiffs plausibly allege that a rogue federal law-enforcement officer violated clearly established Fourth and Fifth amendment rights for which there is no alternative legal remedy, the federal courts can and should recognize a damages claim under Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics.
Holguin-Hernandez v. U.S., No. 18-7739

Issue(s): Whether a formal objection after pronouncement of sentence is necessary to invoke appellate reasonableness review of the length of a defendant’s sentence.
Iancu v. NantKwest Inc., No. 18-801

Issue(s): Whether the phrase “[a]ll the expenses of the proceedings” in 35 U.S.C. § 145 encompasses the personnel expenses the United States Patent and Trademark Office incurs when its employees, including attorneys, defend the agency in Section 145 litigation.
Intel Corp. Investment Policy Committee v. Sulyma, No. 18-1116

Issue(s): Whether the three-year limitations period in Section 413(2) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, which runs from “the earliest date on which the plaintiff had actual knowledge of the breach or violation,” bars suit when all the relevant information was disclosed to the plaintiff by the defendants more than three years before the plaintiff filed the complaint, but the plaintiff chose not to read or could not recall having read the information.
Kahler v. Kansas, No. 18-6135

Issue(s): Whether the Eighth and 14th Amendments permit a state to abolish the insanity defense.
Kansas v. Garcia, No. 17-834

Issue(s): (1) Whether the Immigration Reform and Control Act expressly pre-empts the states from using any information entered on or appended to a federal Form I-9, including common information such as name, date of birth, and social security number, in a prosecution of any person (citizen or alien) when that same, commonly used information also appears in non-IRCA documents, such as state tax forms, leases, and credit applications; and (2) whether the Immigration Reform and Control Act impliedly preempts Kansas’ prosecution of respondents. CVSG: 12/04/2018.
Kansas v. Glover, No. 18-556

Issue(s): Whether, for purposes of an investigative stop under the Fourth Amendment, it is reasonable for an officer to suspect that the registered owner of a vehicle is the one driving the vehicle absent any information to the contrary.
Mathena v. Malvo, No. 18-217

Issue(s): Whether the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit erred in concluding—in direct conflict with Virginia’s highest court and other courts—that a decision of the Supreme Court, Montgomery v. Louisiana, addressing whether a new constitutional rule announced in an earlier decision, Miller v. Alabama, applies retroactively on collateral review may properly be interpreted as modifying and substantively expanding the very rule whose retroactivity was in question.
McKinney v. Arizona, No. 18-1109

Issue(s): (1) Whether the Arizona Supreme Court was required to apply current law when weighing mitigating and aggravating evidence to determine whether a death sentence is warranted; and (2) whether the correction of error under Eddings v. Oklahoma requires resentencing.
Monasky v. Taglieri, No. 18-935

Issue(s): (1) Whether a district court’s determination of habitual residence under the Hague Convention should be reviewed de novo, as seven circuits have held, under a deferential version of de novo review, as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit has held, or under clear-error review, as the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 4th and 6th Circuits have held; and (2) whether, when an infant is too young to acclimate to her surroundings, a subjective agreement between the infant‘s parents is necessary to establish her habitual residence under the Hague Convention.
New York State Rifle & Pistol Association Inc. v. City of New York, New York, No. 18-280

Issue(s): Whether New York City’s ban on transporting a licensed, locked and unloaded handgun to a home or shooting range outside city limits is consistent with the Second Amendment, the commerce clause and the constitutional right to travel.
R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes Inc. v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, No. 18-107

Issue(s): Whether Title VII prohibits discrimination against transgender people based on (1) their status as transgender or (2) sex stereotyping under Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins.
Ramos v. Louisiana, No. 18-5924

Issue(s): Whether the 14th Amendment fully incorporates the Sixth Amendment guarantee of a unanimous verdict.
Retirement Plans Committee of IBM v. Jander, No. 18-1165

Issue(s): Whether Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer’s “more harm than good” pleading standard can be satisfied by generalized allegations that the harm of an inevitable disclosure of an alleged fraud generally increases over time.
Ritzen Group Inc. v. Jackson Masonry, LLC, No. 18-938

Issue(s): Whether an order denying a motion for relief from the automatic stay is a final order under 28 U.S.C. § 158(a)(1).
Rotkiske v. Klemm, No. 18-328

Issue(s): Whether the “discovery rule” applies to toll the one-year statute of limitations under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692, et seq., as the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 4th and 9th Circuits have held but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit (sua sponte en banc) has held contrarily.
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