Third Circuit Tag

Education: Third Circuit Adopts New Standard, Holding that Tinker Does Not Proscribe “Off-Campus” Student Speech B.L. v. Mahanoy Area School District, No. 19-1842 (3d Cir. June 30, 2020). In a decision likely to create greater uncertainty about regulation of student posts to non-school social media, the Third Circuit adopts a rule that off-campus communication is not subject to Tinker’s prohibition against creating disruption within schools and holds that a student’s profane snapchat post cannot result in discipline against her. B.L., a junior varsity...

At the Supreme Court’s “long conference,” where it decides which petitions—that have been piling up all summer—to accept, the Court agreed to hear two unrelated cases involving car searches. Per the Fourth Amendment police officers generally need a warrant to search a car. However,  the automobile exception allows officers to search a car that is “readily mobile” without a warrant if officers have probable cause to believe they will find contraband or a crime has been committed.  Collins v. Virginia raises the question of whether the automobile exception applies to a car that is parked on private property.

Here are last week's published decisions involving local governments:court collumn First Circuit Third Circuit Sixth Circuit

Here are last week's published decisions involving local governments:court collumn Third Circuit
  • Thorpe v. Borough ofJim Thorpe, No. 13-2446 (Oct. 23, 2014): The court reversed district court's conclusion that Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act requires the Borough to disinter Jim Thorpe. In the court's view, "Congress could not have intended th[is] kind of patently absurd result."
Fourth Circuit
  • Davis v. City of Greensboro, No. 13-1820 (Oct. 22, 2014): In suit brought by police officers and firefighters claiming that the City failed to pay certain wages and benefits, the court affirmed district court's denial of the City's motion to dismiss because governmental immunity does not protect the City from breach of contract and estoppel claims.

Here are last week's published decisions involving local governments:court collumn First Circuit
  • Town of Johnston v. Fed. Housing Finance Agency, No. 13-2034 (Aug. 27, 2014): The court affirmed the dismissal of the municipalities' claim that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac failed to pay taxes on property transfers; the court found that statutory exemptions from taxation applied. As the court put it: "Six other circuits have recently considered this attempt to shoe-horn a transfer tax into a real property tax, and they have unanimously rejected the argument."
Second Circuit Third Circuit

Apologies that this edition is delayed. I was tied up with a significant filing for the past week. The courts were busy too. Here are the last two weeks' published decisions involving local governments:court collumn First Circuit
  • Penn v. Escorsio, No. 13-2309 (Aug. 22, 2014): The court affirmed the district court's denial of qualified immunity at the summary judgment stage to corrections officers alleged to be deliberately indifferent to risk that detainee could commit suicide.  The court found that the issues presented on appeal were purely factual, and the court had no jurisdiction to decide them on interlocutory appeal.
Second Circuit

Here are last week's published decisions involving local governments:judicial bench First Circuit Merit Construction Alliance v. City of Quincy, No. 13-2189 (July 16, 2014): The court concluded that the district court: (1) properly determined that ERISA preempts a City ordinance mandating a specific apprentice-training program; and (2) erred by awarding attorney's fees under ERISA's fee-shifting statute. Third Circuit Batchelor v. Rose Tree Media Sch. Dist., No. 13-2192 (July 17, 2014): The court found that retaliation claims related to enforcement under the Indviduals with Disabilities in Education Act must be exhausted before a court may assert subject-matter jurisdiction.

Here are last week's published decisions involving local governments:SCT pillars First Circuit Snyder v. Gaudet, No. 12-1422 (June 25, 2014) (In 42 U.S.C. 1983 action alleging violation of equal protection because city applied zoning restriction differently to Snyder than to prior owner, granting qualified immunity to defendants because right was not clearly established):

Bible Baptist Church Welcomes You!  1 Block --> So reads the sign—decorated with a gold cross and white Bible—that the Borough of Shickshinny, Pennsylvania, allowed to be placed on its A nearby resident, Francene Tearpock-Martini, objected. She sued the Borough under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, alleging that the sign violates the Establishment Clause. Tearpock-Martini's lawsuit had a problem though. Tearpock-Martini had commenced the suit more than two years after the church sign was installed. Under Pennsylvania law, tort actions generally must be brought within two years. And 1983 actions often borrow the statute of limitations from state law. Is her suit time-barred? In a decision this week, the Third Circuit said that it is not:

Here are last week's published decisions involving local governments:SCT pillars Third Circuit
  • Rosano v. Township of Teaneck, No. 13-1263 (June 10, 2014) (in action by current and former police officers against Township alleging violation of Fair Labor Standards Act because it did not pay proper overtime and provide compensation for attending daily roll calls and putting on and taking off uniforms, affirming grant of summary judgment for Township).
Seventh Circuit