February 26, 2024


The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in six cases this week. On February 26, the Court will hear Moody v. NetChoice, LLC and NetChoice, LLC v. Paxton. In these, the Court will decide whether Florida and Texas laws imposing restrictions on social media censorship is a violation of the First Amendment. Moody is a challenge to a Florida law, which imposed content-moderation restrictions on social media giants such as Instagram, Facebook, and X. The law, S.B. 7072, is designed to prevent censorship of conservatives on twitter. Paxton is a challenge to a law in Texas, HB 20, which aims to do similar things. In both cases, NetChoice sued on behalf of social media companies, arguing these laws violate the free speech of companies. In the former instance, the district court and the Eleventh Circuit found in favor of NetChoice; in the latter case, the district court found in favor of NetChoice, but the Fifth Circuit reversed their decision. 

On Tuesday, February 27, the Court will open proceedings by hearing McIntosh v. United States. The court will consider whether criminal forfeiture orders can be entered when the time limit to do so, as specified by federal rules, has passed. Louis McIntosh was convicted of 720 months of jail time for various robbery and gun offenses, but had several counts vacated by the district court. The government belatedly submitted a criminal forfeiture order, which was accepted by both the district court and the Second Circuit despite being late. The second case to be heard on Tuesday is Cantero v. Bank of America, N.A. Here the Court will decide whether the National Bank Act (NBA) preempts state escrow-interest laws for national banks. Alex Cantero sued Bank of America (BOA) for refusing to pay interest on his escrow account used to pay property tax and insurance costs. New York state law requires the Bank do so, but BOA claims the NBA overrules New York law. The district court ruled in favor of Cantero, but the Second Circuit reversed.  

Finally, on Wednesday, February 28, the Court will hear Garland, Att’y Gen. v. Cargill. Here, the court will consider whether a bump stock constitutes a machine gun under federal law. The ATF, without Congressional action, classified them as such in 2018, after the Las Vegas shooting, changing a long-held position of the agency. Cargill challenged the AFT’s classification as an overreach of agency authority. The district court found in favor of the government, as did the Fifth Circuit in an initial hearing. However, in an en banc rehearing, the circuit court reversed their decision. The final case of the week is Coinbase, Inc. v. Suski. The Court will decide whether a court or arbitrator decides when an arbitration agreement is narrowed by subsequent contracts silent on the issue of arbitration. Coinbase, an electronic currency company, in their user agreement, included an arbitration clause. However, in a sweepstakes entry agreement, they required all arbitration to take place in California courts. When sued by Suski and others over the sweepstakes, the Company attempted to engage in arbitration per the user agreement rather than the sweepstakes entry agreement. The district court and Ninth Circuit both ruled that the sweepstakes agreement requirements overruled the user agreement, and arbitration must occur in California courts.  

Landmark will continue to follow these cases and provide updates as circumstances arise. 




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