The 2015 – 2016 Supreme Court term will address a variety of issues which may result in significant implications for the civil justice arena, specifically with regard to class actions, the issue of standing, and questions on state versus federal arbitration.
This briefing covered five cases on the docket: In Campbell-Ewald v. Gomez, the Court will decide whether a case becomes moot, and thus beyond the judicial power of Article III, when the plaintiff receives an offer of complete relief on his claim. In Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, the Court will address whether Congress may confer Article III standing upon a plaintiff who suffers no concrete harm and who therefore could not otherwise invoke the jurisdiction of a federal court. In Tyson Foods v. Bouaphakeo, the Court will decide whether differences among individual class members may be ignored and a class action certified under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(b)(3), or a collective action certified under the Fair Labor Standards Act, where liability and damages will be determined with statistical techniques that presume all class members are identical to the average observed in a sample. In DIRECTV v. Imburgia, the Court will decide whether the California Court of appeals erred in holding that a reference to state law in an arbitration agreement governed by the Federal Arbitration Act requires the application of state law preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act. Finally, in Dollar General Corporation v. Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, the Court will consider whether Indian tribal courts have jurisdiction to adjudicate civil tort claims against nonmembers.
Robert S. Peck
President, Center for Constitutional Litigation
Partner, Shook, Hardy & Bacon
Program Assistant, CCJCA