DC Circuit - The FindLaw DC Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

May 2016 Archives

Students Can Get Discounted FOIA Fees, DC Circuit Rules

Students are educators, too. At least this was the opinion of the DC Circuit, which just opined that documents falling under the FOIA umbrella ought to be cheaper to access for students under the "educational institution" exception.

This appears to be a change in the direction of the FOIA application, as the government has generally held that teachers are eligible for FOIA's reduced fees, but students may not enjoy reduced fees.

NLRB Can't Order Reimbursement of Court Costs

The National Labor and Relations Board has no unilateral power to order the reimbursement of attorneys and litigation expenses incurred during an NLRB meeting, according to the DC Circuit.

Although the power of the board is wide and expansive, the power to issue a "pay up, or else" order does not exist -- even in the face of repeated bad faith instances of NLRB violations.

DC Cir: No Link Between ACA 'Transition' Program and Health Insurance Premiums

A lawyer for the evangelical group American Freedom Law Center has lost his Obamacare suit in the D.C. Circuit on the grounds of lack of standing.

The appellate court ruled that the AFLCA and Robert Muise, it's co-founder and senior counsel, failed to prove beyond the standard of probability that the Health and Human Service's "transitional" program (allowing non-compliant health plans to continue temporarily) actually caused a jump in his health care premiums.

Obamacare is unconstitutional, a federal district judge ruled yesterday -- at least as far as the law's reimbursements to insurers are concerned. Under the Affordable Care Act, insurers must reduce co-payments and deductibles for low-income consumers. The federal government then reimburses insurers for those deductions, at the cost of several billion dollars a year.

But, the ACA did not specifically appropriate money for those reimbursements, and the Obama administration could not cover those payments under other provisions, the court ruled, without violating Congress's exclusive right to control government spending.