hernandez v mesa

On October 11, 2016, the Supreme Court added several high profile cases to its docket. One of the most-anticipated cases is Hernandez v Mesa, which involves the fatal shooting of a Mexican teenager by United States Border Patrol from across the U.S. border onto Mexican soil. The questions before the justices involve the extraterritorial reach [...]

swift v tyson

In Swift v Tyson, 41 U.S. 1 (1842), the U.S. Supreme Court held that the federal courts were authorized to create their own body of common law when hearing cases based on diversity jurisdiction and were not bound by the decisions of the state courts in which the suit arose. The Court’s decision was overruled [...]

pena-rodriguez v colorado

Racism is a hot button issue in the United States right now, and the U.S. Supreme Court is right in the middle of it. The justices recently heard oral arguments in Pena-Rodriguez v Colorado (no.15-606, 2016); in which the Court will be forced to weigh the benefits of juror secrecy over the risks of racial [...]

Charles River Bridge v Warren Bridge

In Charles River Bridge v Warren Bridge, 36 U.S. 420 (1837), the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts did not violate the Constitution’s Contracts Clause by granting a charter to the Warren Bridge Company after previously granting a similar charter to the Charles River Bridge Company. The decision under the new Chief [...]

lee v tam

On September 29, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court added nine cases to its docket. Lee v Tam, which challenges the federal ban on disparaging trademarks, has the potential to be a blockbuster. The Court’s decision could also have serious implications for the Washington Redskins’ legal battle to preserve their team’s trademarks, which Native Americans have [...]

worcester v georgia

In Worcester v Georgia, 31 U.S. 515 (1832), the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Cherokee Nation was sovereign. It also ruled that the federal government — and not the states — was authorized under the Constitution to deal with Indian nations. The Facts of Worcester v Georgia In September 1831, Samuel A. Worcester was [...]

new supreme court term

The U.S. Supreme Court’s new term gets into full swing next week. To kick off the new Supreme Court term, the justices will hear oral arguments in five cases, along with issuing orders and a meeting to consider additional cert petitions. Below are the five cases before the Court: Bravo-Fernandez v. United States: The criminal [...]

Cherokee Nation v Georgia

In Cherokee Nation v Georgia, 30 U.S. (5 Peters) 1 (1831), members of the Cherokee Nation sought to enjoin the state of Georgia from seizing their land. However, the U.S. Supreme Court held that it lacked the authority to enforce the rights of Native American "nations" against the states. The Facts in Cherokee Nation v Georgia [...]

craig v missouri

In Craig v Missouri, 29 U.S. 410 (1830), the U.S. Supreme Court held that a Missouri statute authorizing loan certificates issued by the state violated Article I, section 10 of the Constitution, which prohibits states from issuing bills of credit. The Facts of Craig v Missouri Section 10 of Article I of the Constitution states that [...]

Trinity Lutheran Church v Pauley

The U.S. Supreme Court recently agreed to consider Trinity Lutheran Church v Pauley, a case involving whether the state of Missouri violated the Constitution when it denied the Trinity Lutheran Church’s application for Missouri’s Scrap Tire Grant Program so that it could resurface its playground. The Court’s decision should resolve a circuit split regarding whether [...]