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Daniel Farber | July 11, 2024

Understanding Loper: The Grandfather Clause

To cushion the shock of abandoning Chevron, the U.S. Supreme Court created a safe harbor for past judicial decisions. This was well-advised. The Court itself applied Chevron at least 70 times, as did thousands of lower court decisions. The key question will be the scope of the grandfather clause.

Daniel Farber | July 10, 2024

After Loper: The Primacy of Skidmore

Regulations that were upheld by the courts during the Chevron era have some protection, but new regulations will be fully subject to Loper Bright rather than Chevron. The general refrain in the Loper opinion is “Skidmore deference.” What does that mean and when does it apply?

Daniel Farber | July 8, 2024

Understanding Loper: Delegation and Discretion

One thing about the Loper Bright decision is obvious: it overruled Chevron. So much for past law. What about the future? How should courts review agency regulations now that Chevron is gone? This post tackles a key paragraph in the Loper opinion where the U.S. Supreme Court discusses congressional delegation of authority to agencies. The Court discusses three types of statutes, and it will be crucial for judges in future cases to identify which type is present.

William Funk | July 2, 2024

What’s Next after Supreme Court Opinion in SEC v. Jarkesy?

I am appalled by U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts’ opinion in SEC v. Jarkesy because it is so dishonest in its use of precedent. Put aside for the moment whether fraud under the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) statutes is the equivalent of common law fraud, despite the clear differences between the two. The Chief Justice’s description of the law regarding “public” versus “private” rights as a basis for placing enforcement actions in an agency rather than a court is itself a fraud.

Robin Kundis Craig | July 1, 2024

What’s Next After Supreme Court Curbs Regulatory Power: More Focus on Laws’ Wording, Less on their Goals

The Supreme Court's decision in Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo and Relentless, Inc. v. Department of Commerce means that federal courts will have the final say on what an ambiguous federal statute means. What’s not clear is whether most courts will still listen to expert federal agencies in determining which interpretations make the most sense.

James Goodwin | July 1, 2024

With Decision in Corner Post, the U.S. Supreme Court’s Assault on the Administrative State This Term Is Now Comprehensive and Complete

The U.S. administrative state does not merely protect Americans against those threats that we are unable to protect ourselves from on our own. It is essential to a healthy economy, it provides a crucial platform for democratic self-government, and it functions as a great social equalizer. All of this is now at risk after the U.S. Supreme Court’s conservatives issued four separate decisions largely along ideological lines aimed at eviscerating this crucial institution. The administrative state has been built over the course of nearly 250 years, slowly and pragmatically, since the founding; it has taken just three decision days for the Court to undo much of that work.

James Goodwin | June 28, 2024

Unprincipled Supreme Court Decision on Agency Deference Harmful but Not Fatal to Public Protections, Administrative State

The American public is lucky to have the federal administrative state. Every day, it protects all of us from harms like heavily polluted air, consistently contaminated drinking water, and dangerous workplaces. It strengthens our democracy. And it ensures a fairer, healthier, and more inclusive economy. The good news is that the self-aggrandizing U.S. Supreme Court decision in Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo and Relentless, Inc. v. Department of Commerce does not change that. And that is because it cannot change that.

James Goodwin | June 27, 2024

With New Memo on Chevron, Congressional Republicans Inadvertently Rebut Argument in Favor of Overturning Chevron

Earlier this week, the conservative House Republican Study Committee (RSC) issued a memo on how the party’s lawmakers should respond to the U.S. Supreme Court’s pending decisions in a pair of cases called Loper Bright v. Raimondo and Relentless v. Department of Commerce. In these cases, the Court is considering whether to overturn a 40-year-old legal doctrine called Chevron deference, which guides reviewing courts to defer to agencies’ reasonable interpretations of their statutory authority when relevant provisions are unclear.

air pollution

Daniel Farber | June 27, 2024

The Supreme Court and Interstate Pollution

Months ago, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear an “emergency” request to stay EPA’s new rule regulating interstate air pollution. Like most observers, I was puzzled that the Court was bothering with the case before the D.C. Circuit even had a chance to consider the merits of the challenges. Months later, the Court has finally granted the stay, over a strong dissent from Justice Barrett. EPA may be able to fix the problem with this rule very quickly, and the opinion — at least on first reading — doesn’t seem to carry broad implications for other environmental litigation.