March 02, 2016
Justice Antonin Scalia’s recent passing leaves the United States Supreme Court with eight active members. The timetable for the nomination and confirmation of his successor is unknown and currently the subject of a political dispute and intensive media coverage. There has been extensive reporting on the potential impact of Justice Scalia’s death on major cases involving social issues, but less discussion of the potential impact of his death on business cases. In at least one recent case, however, a corporate defendant cited the uncertainty following Justice Scalia’s death in connection with a decision to settle. Speculation about what the Supreme Court might do in a particular case is inherently unreliable (and perhaps even more so in business cases than in cases involving social issues or criminal law). We thought it would be useful, however, to identify business cases of potential interest to our business clients and offer some analysis of potential impact.