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SCOTUS heard oral arguments this week, in the closely watched Lucia v. SEC case. The petitioner is seeking to invalidate a judgment against him affirmed by an SEC administrative law judge by claiming that the SEC overstepped when it hired ALJs because they should have been appointed by the president or SEC pursuant to the president's constitutional appointment power.

Though Justice Gorsuch only seemed concerned with what sort of remedy the petitioner sought, several other justices seemed rather curious about how invalidating the SEC's current selection process for judges would affect those judges' impartiality and independence. Another big issue that the Court seemed to briskly skirt involved the president's ability not just to hire, but also the power to fire, agency appointees.

Edie Windsor Skips 2nd Cir, Files DOMA Challenge with SCOTUS

There’s officially a second Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) challenge vying for Supreme Court review.

Monday, Edie Windsor filed a petition for certiorari with the Nine seeking the return of more than $300,000 in estate taxes that she was forced to pay after her spouse died, reports the Huffington Post.

SCOTUS: No Survivor Benefits for Posthumously-Conceived Children

The Supreme Court ruled on Monday that twins conceived after their father's death were not entitled to his Social Security benefits.

In the opinion -- reversing a prior Third Circuit Court of Appeals decision that granted benefits to the posthumously-conceived children -- the unanimous Supreme Court noted that the Social Security Administration's interpretation of the survivor benefit statute "is better attuned to the statute's text and its design to benefit primarily those supported by the deceased wage earner in his or her lifetime."

Will SCOTUS Favor Administrative Deference in Astrue v. Capato?

The Supreme Court heard arguments today in Astrue v. Capato, regarding whether the Social Security Administration (SSA) should pay survivor benefits to posthumously-conceived children. Currently, the SSA denies benefits to children born more than nine months after a wage-earner’s death.

Based on the justices’ reactions to the oral arguments, there will not be a change in that SSA policy.

Part of the reason is that the Obama administration is opposed to extending benefits in such situations. When a situation falls within a grey area of the law, the Court typically gives “administrative deference” to the government’s interpretation of a law, reports CNN.

End of the Anna Nicole Smith Trial? U.S. Supreme Court Decides

The Anna Nicole Smith trial has finally come to an end. Earlier this week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the heirs of deceased model Anna Nicole Smith, reports the New York Times.

The former Playboy Playmate had been involved in estate litigation well before her untimely death. She was married to oil tycoon Howard Marshall II and was tangled up in a bitter battle over his estate for several years.