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The framework in Zauderer v. Office of Disciplinary Counsel of Supreme Court of Ohio, 471 U.S. 626, 651 (1985), applied beyond the context of preventing consumer deception. The Ninth Circuit reversed the denial of the Associations' motion for a preliminary injunction that sought to enjoin the implementation of the City and County of San Francisco's ordinance that would require warnings about the health effects of certain sugar-sweetened beverages on specific types of fixed advertising within San Francisco. The panel held that, although there was no dispute that San Francisco has a substantial government interest in the health of its citizens, the Associations were likely to succeed on the merits of their claim that the ordinance was an unjustified or unduly burdensome disclosure requirement that might offend the First Amendment by chilling protected commercial speech. In regard to the remaining steps of the preliminary injunction test, the panel also held that the Associations have demonstrated a likelihood of suffering irreparable harm if the ordinance was allowed to go into effect; the balance of hardships tipped sharply in favor of the Associations; and a preliminary injunction was in the public interest here. View "American Beverage Assoc. v. City and County of San Francisco" on Justia Law

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Plaintiffs Merritt L. Sharp III and Carol Sharp filed suit against officers for violation of their constitutional rights under 42 U.S.C. 1983, as well as California law. This case arose out of the execution of an arrest warrant for Merritt L. Sharp IV, the son of Sharp III and Carol. Sharp III was mistakenly arrested and detained instead of Sharp IV. The Ninth Circuit held that the district court properly denied qualified immunity on Sharp III's retaliation claim, and appropriately rejected all state-law immunities; the deputies were entitled to qualified immunity on Carol's retaliation claim and Sharp III's claims for the seizure of his person, the use of excessive force against him, and the search of his person, as well as plaintiffs' shared claim concerning the search of their home; and, although much of the conduct was unconstitutional, qualified immunity was nevertheless warranted on those claims in light of recent Supreme Court pronouncements and based on the failure by plaintiffs to identify sufficiently specific constitutional precedents to alert these officers that some of their particular conduct was unlawful. Accordingly, the panel affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded for further proceedings. View "Sharp v. County of Orange" on Justia Law

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The use of force policy adopted by the City of Seattle does not violate the Second Amendment right of police officers to use firearms for the core lawful purpose of self-defense. The Ninth Circuit applied a two-step analysis and held that the policy was subject to Second Amendment protection because the policy—an employer policy that regulates a police officer's use of a department-issued firearm while on duty—did not resemble any of the "presumptively lawful" regulations recognized in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570, 574–75, 635 (2008), and the parties have adduced no evidence that the policy imposed a restriction on conduct that falls outside the historical scope of the Second Amendment right to use a firearm for self-defense. The panel applied intermediate scrutiny to determine whether the policy violated the Second Amendment and held that there was a reasonable fit between the policy and Seattle's important interest in promoting the safety of the public and its police officers. Therefore, the panel affirmed the district court's dismissal of the Second Amendment claim. The panel also affirmed the district court's dismissal of the remaining substantive due process and equal protection claims. View "Mahoney v. City of Seattle" on Justia Law

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The Ninth Circuit vacated defendant's sentence for illegal reentry. At sentencing, the district court applied an eight-level enhancement under USSG 2L1.2(b)(2)(B) of the 2016 United States Sentencing Guidelines, which was applicable if, before the defendant was ordered deported or ordered removed from the United States for the first time, the defendant sustained a conviction for a felony offense (other than an illegal reentry offense) for which the sentence imposed was two years or more. In this case, although defendant sustained a felony conviction for lewd conduct with a child before he was first ordered deported, he was sentenced to only one year of incarceration before his first deportation order; the sentence was increased to three years of incarceration after he returned to the United States. Therefore, the panel held that defendant's conviction did not qualify for the enhancement under 2L1.2(b)(2)(B). View "United States v. Hernandez Martinez" on Justia Law

Posted in: Criminal Law

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The Ninth Circuit reversed the district court's denial of qualified immunity to two police officers in an action alleging claims under 42 U.S.C. 1983 for unconstitutional seizures and use of excessive force. In this case, officers entered into a vacant apartment without a warrant and used deadly force on Michael Duncklee, who aggressively attacked them while growling and brandishing a broken hockey stick inside the apartment. The panel reversed the denial of qualified immunity regarding the warrantless entry and seizure of the apartment, because Duncklee had no reasonable expectation of privacy while trespassing in the apartment. The panel also reversed the denial of qualified immunity regarding the seizure of and use of force on Duncklee, because it was not clearly established that defendants' actions violated a constitutional right. Finally, the panel reversed the district court's partial grant of summary judgment in favor of plaintiff. View "Woodward v. City of Tucson" on Justia Law

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The Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(f) deadline, which governs interlocutory appeals of orders granting or denying class action certification, is not jurisdictional, and thus equitable exceptions apply. The Ninth Circuit held that a motion for reconsideration filed within the Rule 23(f) deadline will toll the deadline; additional equitable circumstances may also warrant tolling; and, in this case, the Rule 23(f) deadline was tolled when counsel for the lead plaintiff, within fourteen days of the district court's decertification order, informed the court of his intention to seek reconsideration, explained his reasons for doing so, and the court set a date for filing the motion with which counsel complied. On the merits, the panel held that the district court abused its discretion in decertifying the class. Accordingly, the court reversed and remanded for further proceedings. View "Lambert v. Nutraceutical Corp." on Justia Law

Posted in: Class Action

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The Ninth Circuit reversed the grant of summary judgment for plaintiffs in an action challenging California Health and Safety Code 25982. Section 25982 bans the sale of products made from force-fed birds, such as foie gras. The panel held that section 25982 is not expressly preempted by the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA), because the PPIA prohibited states from imposing "ingredient requirements" that were "in addition to, or different than" the federal law. In this case, the ordinary meaning of "ingredient" and the purpose and scope of the PPIA together made clear that "ingredient requirements" pertain to the physical components that comprise a poultry product, not animal husbandry or feeding practices. The panel also held that the PPIA impliedly preempted section 25982 under the doctrines of field and obstacle preemption. Accordingly, the panel vacated the district court's permanent injunction and remanded for further proceedings. View "Association des Eleveurs de Canards et d'Oies du Quebec v. Becerra" on Justia Law

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The Ninth Circuit vacated the district court's affirmance of the bankruptcy court's order enforcing a stipulated agreement in adversary proceedings seeking to debar an attorney from submitting claims to asbestos trusts. The trusts were created through the Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings of entities exposed to significant asbestos liability. In Golden v. California Emergency Physicians Medical Group, 782 F.3d 1083 (9th Cir. 2015), the panel held that assessing the validity of a settlement agreement is a question of state contract law. In this case, the district court never addressed whether federal law governed this case, and it was unclear whether the district court was even aware that the trusts contended that federal law controlled its decision. Furthermore, the district court also did not apply Golden to the settlement at issue. Accordingly, the court remanded so that the district court can decide whether federal or state law governs (including whether the federal law argument has been waived), and what impact, if any, Golden has on this case. View "Mandelbrot v. J.T. Thorpe Settlement Trust" on Justia Law

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11 U.S.C. 502(b)(4) acts as a federal cap on a fee already determined pursuant to state law. The Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court's reversal of the bankruptcy court's decision reducing a claim for pre-petition attorneys' fees under section 502(b)(4). Section 502(b)(4) limits claims for services rendered by the debtor's attorney to the extent that such claims exceed the reasonable value of such services. The panel explained that the proper mode of analysis was: (1) an acknowledgment or determination that the fee contract was breached; (2) an assessment of the damages for the breach under state law; (3) a determination under section 502(b)(4) of reasonableness of the damages claim afforded by state law; and (4) a reduction of the claim by whatever extent, if any, it is deemed excessive. The panel also held that the section 502(b)(4) cap limits fees for services already performed. The Full Faith and Credit Act requires, in the circumstances of this case, that the judgment of the state court confirming the arbitration award be given full faith and credit in the bankruptcy proceeding. View "McProud v. Siller" on Justia Law

Posted in: Bankruptcy

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The Ninth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's decision concluding that petitioner's conviction for misdemeanor domestic violence assault under Arizona Revised Statutes 13-1203 and 13-3601 was a crime of domestic violence under 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(2)(E), and thus rendered him removeable. The panel held that the statute was divisible and, under the modified categorical approach, there was a sufficient factual basis to support that petitioner intentionally or knowingly caused any physical injury to his spouse. Therefore, petitioner's misdemeanor domestic violence conviction was a crime of domestic violence under section 1227(a)(2)(E), and he was removeable. View "Cornejo-Villagrana v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law