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

November 2012 Archives

Sixth Circuit Hits the Bottle ... Again

In 1976, Michigan enacted the Michigan Container Act — known as the “Bottle Bill” — to encourage beverage container recycling. It is one of ten states that requires consumers to pay a can, plastic bottle, or glass bottle deposit when purchasing specified beverage containers.

This week, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals solidified its status as the booze bottle niche court by ruling that a fraud prevention amendment to the Bottle Bill violates the Commerce Clause.

Guardian Ad Litem Fees are Nondischargeable in Bankruptcy

There are certain obligations that a bankruptcy petitioner can't shed in court.

For example, barring "undue hardship," your student loans will follow you. Forever.

Student loans, however, have nothing on child support. Courts are pretty committed to enforcing domestic support obligations. And that commitment to extends to guardian ad litem fees.

Color of Law: When Cops (Allegedly) Attack Defense Attorneys

Timothy Barkovic is a Michigan criminal defense lawyer and a self-described "outspoken critic of police conduct." Based on today's case from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, we doubt he will change his tune any time soon.

Barkovic and Terrance Hogan, an 11-year veteran of the Shelby Township Police Department, got into a verbal and physical fight in the hallway of the District Court Courthouse in Shelby Township, Michigan. Hogan reportedly pushed Barkovic into a door frame, injuring Barkovic.

Sixth Circuit: Michigan Affirmative Action Ban Unconstitutional

Voters amended the Michigan Constitution in 2006 to ban affirmative action in public education. The initiative -- known as Proposal 2 -- was a response to the Supreme Court's 2003 affirmative action rulings in Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger.

Thursday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Michigan's affirmative action ban was unconstitutional because it presents an extraordinary burden to opponents who would try to protect affirmative action, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Attorney Must Pay Damages for 'Morphed' Child Porn Images

We all know that an attorney is supposed zealously represent his client. Dean Boland was just too zealous an advocate for his own good.

In an attempt to help defendants resist child-pornography charges, Boland — a technology expert and lawyer — downloaded images of children from a stock photography website and digitally imposed the children’s faces onto the bodies of adults performing sex acts. Boland’s aim was to show the trial court that the defendants may not have known they were viewing child pornography.

When the parents of the children involved found out about the images, they sued Boland under the civil remedy provisions of two federal child-pornography statutes. The district court awarded the parents a total of $300,000 in damages. Last week, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed that award.

'Well-Founded Fear' is Critical in Asylum Appeal

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a Senegalese couple’s asylum appeal this week, finding that the couple failed to assert a well-founded fear that their daughters would be subject to female genital mutilation if they returned.

Aminata Dieng and her husband Ousseynou N’Diaye Lo asked for review of a Board of Immigration Appeals’ (BIA’s) final order of removal denying their applications for asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the United Nations Convention Against Torture (CAT). Lo entered the United States in 1997 with a non-immigrant student visa. He reunited with Dieng, whom he first met in Senegal in 1994, when she used a false passport to enter the U.S. in 2003. They married in November 2005, and their daughter Mame was born in April 2006 in Virginia.

Nurse Loses FLSA Meal Break Case, Should Have Followed Protocol

If you want to win a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) compensation dispute, you have to prove that an employer knew or should have known that it owed your client for her work.

If your client -- like today's Sixth Circuit appellant -- failed to comply with internal reporting protocols, she may be out of luck.

Sixth Circuit: Ohio Voters Must Find the Correct Polling Place

The 2012 election season has been a legal and emotional rollercoaster in Ohio. First, there was the court battle over early voting. Then, there was debate over how -- or if -- faulty ballots should be counted.

This week, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals enjoined a district court's order requiring the state to count provisional ballots cast in the wrong precinct or polling location, The Associated Press reports.