US Supreme Court Watch

Pending cases at the US Supreme Court:

  • Tyson Foods, Inc. v. Bouaphakeo – Whether class or collective actions can be certified where liability and damages will be determined with statistical techniques that presume all class members are identical to the average observed in a sample, and class contains members who were not injured. Oral argument November 10, 2015.
  • Dollar General Corporation v. Mississippi Band of Choctaw IndiansWhether Indian tribal court has jurisdiction over an intern’s claim that the manager of a store on tribal land sexually molested him while he was working there. Oral argument to be scheduled for October 2015 or later. [Blog]
  • Campbell-Ewald Company v. Gomez – Whether an unaccepted Rule 68 offer that would fully satisfy an individual plaintiff’s claim moots that claim, and also moots a class action. Oral argument to be scheduled for October 2015 or later. [Blog]
  • Green v. Donahoe – Whether, under federal employment discrimination law, the filing period for a constructive discharge claim begins to run when an employee resigns, or at the time of an employer’s last allegedly discriminatory act giving rise to the resignation. Oral argument to be scheduled for October 2015 or later. [Blog]
  • Montanile v. Board of Trustees of the National Elevator Industry Health Benefit Plan – Does a lawsuit by an ERISA fiduciary against a participant to recover an alleged overpayment by the plan seek “equitable relief” within the meaning of ERISA section 502(a)(3), 29 U.S.C. § 1132(a)(3), if the fiduciary has not identified a particular fund that is in the participant’s possession and control at the time the fiduciary asserts its claim? Oral argument to be scheduled for October 2015 or later. [Blog]

Recently decided cases at the US Supreme Court: 

  • EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores – An employer can be liable under Title VII  for refusing to hire an applicant based on a “religious observance and practice” even if the employer lacks actual knowledge that a religious accommodation was required, so long as the need for an accommodation was a motivating factor in the employer’s decision. June 1, 2015.  [Blog]
  • Tibble v. Edison International – ERISA trustee’s continuing duty to monitor investments determines when statute of limitations begins to run. May 18, 2015.  [Blog]
  • Mach Mining v. EEOC – Courts may enforce the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s mandatory duty to conciliate discrimination claims before filing suit, yet the scope of review is deferential. April 29, 2015.  [Blog]
  • Young v. United Parcel Service – If a pregnant woman can’t do her regular job and asks for a light duty assignment, and many (but not all) other workers get light duty as an accommodation for a disability or on-the-job injury, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act may require that the employer also accommodate the pregnant woman. March 25, 2015. [Blog]
  • Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Assoc – A federal agency [Department of Labor] need not engage in notice-and-comment rulemaking pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act before it significantly alters an interpretive rule that articulates an interpretation of an agency regulation. March 9, 2015. [Blog]
  • M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett – When a collective bargaining agreement is silent concerning the duration of retiree health-care benefits, courts should apply ordinary contract principles, and not presume that silence means the parties intended those benefits to vest. January 26, 2015.
  • Department of Homeland Security v. MacLean – Whistleblower’s disclosures, which were contrary to TSA’s regulations
    on sensitive security information, were not “specifically prohibited by law,” because regulations do not qualify as “law” under the whistleblower statute.  January 21, 2015.
  • Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc. v. Busk – Time spent in post-shift security screenings is not compensable under the Fair Labor Standards Act as amended by the Portal-to-Portal Act. December 9, 2014. [Blog]

Decisions during 2013-2014 session:

Certiorari dismissed:

  • UNITE HERE Local 355 v. Mulhall (12/10/2013) The writ of certiorari was dismissed as improvidently granted, so the Court did not decide whether union-management neutrality agreements are lawful.
  • Madigan v. Levin (10/15/2013) The writ of certiorari was dismissed as improvidently granted, so the Court did not decide whether public sector employee can bring an age bias claim directly under the Constitution without following ADEA procedures.