U.S. Sixth Circuit - The FindLaw 6th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

October 2012 Archives

Fired Employee's Discrimination Claim Belongs to Bankruptcy Estate

There are bad weeks, and then there are lose-your-job-and-file-for-bankruptcy bad weeks. Karen Auday had the unfortunate distinction of enduring the latter.

To make matters worse, Auday alleges that she was a victim of age discrimination. While that may be true, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last week that Auday can't sue her former employer because the claim now belongs to her bankruptcy estate.

Seriously, this woman can't catch a break.

Sixth Circuit: Michigan Transit Authority Can Reject AFDI Ads

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled this week that a Michigan state-run transit authority can refuse to display American Freedom Defense Initiative ads on the sides of city buses, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The appellate court lifted a preliminary injunction against a Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART) policy prohibiting content "that is political or that subjects any group to scorn," concluding that AFDI was unlikely to succeed on the merits of its suit. The court found the policy reasonable and viewpoint neutral.

Sixth Circuit: Condo Fees are a Debt Under the FDCPA

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) defines a “debt” as a consumer’s obligation to pay money arising out of a transaction in which the money, property, insurance, or services are primarily for personal, family, or household purposes.

The Sixth Circuit’s take on this definition? FDCPA debt, condo fees. Same difference.

Here’s how this came to pass.

Age Gap Must Be 'Significant' to Support Discrimination Claim

Peggy Blizzard was hired as a part-time Associate Accounts Payable Clerk in the Business Office at Marion Technical College (MTC) in 1992. She was promoted to Accounts Payable Clerk 1 in 1996, and terminated from that position in April 2008, when she was 57. Blizzard sued MTC, claiming that her termination was based on age discrimination.

This week, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals found that there wasn't a large enough age gap between Blizzard and her replacement to prove support the age discrimination claim.

Planned Parenthood Wants En Banc Review of Abortion Pill Decision

Planned Parenthood is asking the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals for en banc rehearing of a decision upholding Ohio's restrictions on the abortion pill widely known as RU-486, reports The Associated Press.

Tuesday, the group filed a petition asking the full court to reconsider the case.

Ohio Loses Another Ballot Box Appeal

Ohio requires provisional ballots to be cast in the correct precinct and with a completed voter affirmation. Some Ohio polling places serve voters from several precincts, but the law does not make an exception wrong-precinct and deficient-affirmation ballots caused by poll-worker error.

According to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, the state can't do that.

Will SCOTUS Hear Ohio Early Voting Case Before November?

Can you even remember a time when the real action in an election occurred at the polls instead of in the courts? It's a foreign concept now, but we vaguely recall when that was the norm.

Over the last year, we've seen candidates suing to be placed on a party primary ballot, states suing over redistricting maps, and parties suing to be recognized by states.

Lately, Ohio's early voting measure has been basking in the legal limelight with a federal challenge. This year, the Republican-controlled state legislature eliminated early voting during the pre-election weekend, except for military members and Americans overseas. On Friday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Ohioans may cast early in-person absentee ballots during the final three days before the Nov. 6 election, reports Cincinatti.com

Court Criticizes Defendant for Appealing Trial Objections He Won

Losing an appeal stinks. Losing an appeal, and enduring Sixth Circuit criticism for your bad arguments, sucks.

In an opinion released Thursday, Sixth Circuit Judge Jeffrey Sutton wrote, "Joaquin Tasis and several comrades devised a sophisticated scheme to bill Medicare for fictitious drug therapies, bilking taxpayers out of millions of dollars in the process. When the authorities got wind of the scheme, they prosecuted Tasis and his coconspirators ... The Medicare scheme was elaborate and complex, but Tasis' arguments on appeal are not."

Sixth Circuit Upholds Ohio's RU-486 Limits

Tuesday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a decision upholding Ohio's restrictions on the abortion pill widely known as RU-486.

In 2004, Ohio passed a law criminalizing the distribution of mifepristone, also known as RU-486, unless the distribution followed certain protocols and gestational time limits identified by the FDA when mifepristone was first approved in 2000. The law criminalizes the use of mifepristone after the seventh week of a pregnancy, reports Cincinatti.com.