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Supreme Court Litigation Clinic

Recent Filings and Developments

  • June 2, 2015: Clinic files petition for certiorari in Sac and Fox Nation v. Borough of Jim Thorpe, involving whether the Native American Graves and Repatriation Act allows the tribe and sons of legendary athlete Jim Thorpe to request that his remains be returned to tribal lands for burial according to tribal customs. See coverage on NPR, The Wall Street Journal Law Blog, and the Legal Times.
  • April 26, 2015: Court grant's clinic's petition for certiorari in Green v. Donahoe, involving how to calculate the deadline for filing "constructive discharge" claims under the federal anti-discrimination statutes.
  • April 21, 2015: Court rules in favor of clinic's clients in Oneok, Inc. v. Learjet, holding that the Natural Gas Act does not preempt state antitrust claims arising from a conspiracy to inflate the retail price of gas. See coverage in JURIST.
  • March 2, 2015: Clinic presents oral argument in Ohio v. Clark, concerning how the Sixth Amendment's Confrontation Clause applies to child witnesses. For coverage, see SCOTUSBlog.
  • February 27, 2015: Clinic files opening brief in Bourke v. Beshear, arguing that the Fourteenth Amendment prohibits states from refusing to issue licenses or recognize marriages between same-sex couples.
  • February 11, 2015: Clinic files petition for certiorari in Nguyen v. North Dakota, involving whether or under what circumstances police officers conduct a "search" under the Fourth Amendment when they trespass in common areas of locked apartment buildings to look for evidence of crime.
  • November 25, 2014: Clinic files certiorari petition in Green v. Donahoe, U.S. Postal Service, raising the issue of when, under federal employment discrimination law, the filing period for an unlawful constructive discharge claim begins to run. For more information and to view the certiorari petition, see SCOTUSBlog at
  • November 21, 2014: Clinic files merits brief for a group of respondents in ONEOK v. Learjet, et al., which involves whether the Natural Gas Act preempts state antitrust claims arising from a conspiracy to inflate the retail price of gas.    Argument was heard on January 12, 2015. For more information and to view briefs previously filed in the case, see SCOTUSBlog at
  • November 13, 2014: Clinic files certiorari petition in Nelson v. Wisconsin, presenting the question whether a trial court’s complete denial of a criminal defendant’s constitutional right to testify is amenable to harmless-error analysis.
  • October 6, 2014: The Court issued an order (see p. 39) in favor of the clinic's clients in Smith v. Bishop, declining without comment to review the lower court's ruling striking down the state's ban on same-sex marriages. This order was issued along with six others in similarly pending petitions certiorari on the first day of the October 2014 term. Within hours of the announcement, county clerk offices began issuing marriage licenses in Virginia, Indiana, Wisconsin, Oklahoma and Utah. See coverage in The New York Times, SCOTUSblog here and here.
  • August 27, 2014: Clinic files brief in Smith v. Bishop, urging the Supreme Court, on behalf of a same-sex couple in Oklahoma, to grant certiorari to decide whether the Fourteenth Amendment prohibits states from banning same-sex marriage. See coverage in The Washington Post and on SCOTUSBlog.
  • June 25, 2014: The Court rules unanimously in favor of the clinic's client in Riley v. California, holding that police are required to obtain warrants in order to search cell phones of those arrested. See coverage in New York Times, SCOTUSblog.
  • April 28, 2014: Clinic files petition for certiorari in Dunlap v. Idaho, involving whether the Sixth Amendment right to confront adverse witnesses applies to facts the prosecution must prove to establish a defendant's eligibility for the death penalty.
  • April 21, 2014: Court grants clinic's petition for certiorari in Heien v. North Carolina, involving whether a police officer's mistaken understanding of the law can provide the individualized suspicion the Fourth Amendment requires to justify a traffic stop.
  • February 25, 2014: Court rules 6-3 against clinic's client in Fernandez v. California, holding that the police may search an arrestee's home based on the consent of a co-tenant even when the arrestee told the police before arrested that he refused such consent. See coverage in The New York Times and SCOTUSBlog.
  • January 17, 2014: Court grants clinic's cert petition in Riley v. California, presenting the question whether, or under what circumstances, the Fourth Amendment permits the police to conduct a warrantless search of the digital contents of a person's cell phone seized during an arrest. See coverage in the The New York Times.
  • January 14, 2014: Court rules against clinic's clients in Daimler AG v. Bauman, holding that a foreign corporation is not subject to U.S. jurisdiction for injuries allegedly incurred outside of this country. See coverage in the New York Times and on SCOTUSblog.