Caniglia v. Strom et al.

Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The First Circuit

No. 20–157. Argued March 24, 2021—Decided May 17, 2021

During an argument with his wife, petitioner Edward Caniglia placed a handgun on the dining room table and asked his wife to “shoot [him] and get it over with.” His wife instead left the home and spent the night at a hotel. The next morning, she was unable to reach her husband by phone, so she called the police to request a welfare check. The responding officers accompanied Caniglia’s wife to the home, where they encountered Caniglia on the porch. The officers called an ambulance based on the belief that Caniglia posed a risk to himself or others. Caniglia agreed to go to the hospital for a psychiatric evaluation on the condition that the officers not confiscate his firearms. But once Caniglia left, the officers located and seized his weapons. Caniglia sued, claiming that the officers had entered his home and seized him and his firearms without a warrant in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The District Court granted summary judgment to the officers. The First Circuit affirmed, extrapolating from the Court’s decision in Cady v. Dombrowski, 413 U. S. 433, a theory that the officers’ removal of Caniglia and his firearms from his home was justified by a “community caretaking exception” to the warrant requirement.

Held: Neither the holding nor logic of Cady justifies such warrantless searches and seizures in the home. Cady held that a warrantless search of an impounded vehicle for an unsecured firearm did not violate the Fourth Amendment. In reaching this conclusion, the Court noted that the officers who patrol the “public highways” are often called to discharge noncriminal “community caretaking functions,” such as responding to disabled vehicles or investigating accidents. 413 U. S., at 441. But searches of vehicles and homes are constitutionally different, as the Cady opinion repeatedly stressed. Id., at 439, 440–442. The very core of the Fourth Amendment’s guarantee is the right of a person to retreat into his or her home and “there be free from unreasonable governmental intrusion.” Florida v. Jardines, 569 U. S. 1, 6. A recognition of the existence of “community caretaking” tasks, like rendering aid to motorists in disabled vehicles, is not an open-ended license to perform them anywhere. Pp. 3–4.

953 F. 3d 112, vacated and remanded.

 Thomas, J., delivered the opinion for a unanimous Court. Roberts, C. J., filed a concurring opinion, in which Breyer, J., joined. Alito, J., and Kavanaugh, J., filed concurring opinions.

BP p. l. c. et al. v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore

Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Fourth Circuit

No. 19–1189. Argued January 19, 2021—Decided May 17, 2021

Baltimore’s Mayor and City Council (collectively City) sued various energy companies in Maryland state court alleging that the companies concealed the environmental impacts of the fossil fuels they promoted. The defendant companies removed the case to federal court invoking a number of grounds for federal jurisdiction, including the federal officer removal statute, 28 U. S. C. §1442. The City argued that none of the defendants’ various grounds for removal justified retaining federal jurisdiction, and the district court agreed, issuing an order remanding the case back to state court. Although an order remanding a case to state court is ordinarily unreviewable on appeal, Congress has determined that appellate review is available for those orders “remanding a case to the State court from which it was removed pursuant to section 1442 or 1443 of [Title 28].” §1447(d). The Fourth Circuit read this provision to authorize appellate review only for the part of a remand order deciding the §1442 or §1443 removal ground. It therefore held that it lacked jurisdiction to review the district court’s rejection of the defendants’ other removal grounds.

Held: The Fourth Circuit erred in holding that it lacked jurisdiction to consider all of the defendants’ grounds for removal under §1447(d). Pp. 4–14.

 (a) The ordinary meaning of §1447(d)’s text permits appellate review of the district court’s entire remand order when a defendant relies on §1442 or §1443 as a ground for removal. The relevant portion of §1447(d) provides that “an order remanding a case to the State court from which it was removed pursuant to section 1442 or 1443 of this title shall be reviewable by appeal.” The “order remanding a case” here rejected all of the defendants’ grounds for removal because (subject to exceptions not applicable here) the district court was not at liberty to remove the City’s case from its docket until it determined that it lacked any authority to entertain the suit. See, e.g., Carnegie-Mellon Univ. v. Cohill, 484 U. S. 343, 356; see also Sprint Communications, Inc. v. Jacobs, 571 U. S. 69, 72 (“[C]ourts are obliged to decide cases within the scope of federal jurisdiction” assigned to them). And this case was removed “pursuant to” §1442 because the defendants relied on §1442 as a ground for removal when satisfying the requirements of §1446. It makes no difference that the defendants removed the case “pursuant to” multiple federal statutes. The general removal statute contemplates this possibility when it speaks of actions “removed solely under” the diversity jurisdiction statute. §1446(b)(2)(A) (emphasis added). And §1447(d) contains no comparable language limiting appellate review to cases removed solely under §1442 or §1443. The parties’ dueling observations that Congress knows how to authorize appellate courts to review every issue in a remand order, see, e.g., 18 U. S. C. §3595(c)(1), and that Congress also knows how to limit appellate review to particular “questions” rather than the whole “order,” see, e.g., 28 U. S. C. §1295(a)(7), confirms the wisdom of focusing on the language Congress did employ. The City’s novel contention that the defendants never really removed the case pursuant to §1442 because no federal court here held that the statute indeed authorized removal is mistaken and has never been adopted by any court. Pp. 4–8.

 (b) The Court’s most analogous precedent, Yamaha Motor Corp., U. S. A. v. Calhoun, 516 U. S. 199, resolves any remaining doubt about the best reading of §1447(d). That case involved a dispute about the meaning of §1292(b)—a statute allowing a district court to certify “an order” to the court of appeals if it “involves a controlling question of law.” The Court held that the statute’s grant of appellate review for the “order,” meant the entire order was reviewable, not just the part of the order containing the “controlling question of law.” Id., at 205. The City suggests that the statute’s use of the word “involves” shows that the reviewable issues on appeal can be broader than the certified question. But nothing in Yamaha turned on the presence of the word “involves.” Instead, as here, the Court focused on the statute’s use of the word “order.” The Court’s decisions in Murdock v. Memphis, 20 Wall. 590, and United States v. Keitel, 211 U. S. 370, do not support the City because both decisions were driven by concerns unique to their statutory contexts; their reasoning is not easily generalizable to other jurisdictional statutes; and neither comes nearly as close to the mark as Yamaha. The Court’s decisions in Carlsbad Technology, Inc. v. HIF Bio, Inc., 556 U. S. 635, and Thermtron Products, Inc. v. Hermansdorfer, 423 U. S. 336—which permitted rather than foreclosed appellate review of certain remand orders—similarly do not help the City’s cause because they say nothing about the part of §1447(d) at issue today. Finally, the City argues that, when Congress amended §1447(d) to add the exception for federal officer removal under §1442 to the existing exception for civil rights cases under §1443, Congress ratified lower court decisions that had read the prior version of §1447(d) as permitting review only of the part of the remand order addressing §1443’s civil rights removal ground. It is most unlikely that a smattering of lower court opinions could ever represent a “broad and unquestioned” judicial consensus that Congress must have been aware of and is presumed to have endorsed. Jama v. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, 543 U. S. 335, 349. And it certainly cannot do so where, as here, “the text and structure of the statute are to the contrary.” Id., at 352. Pp. 8–12.

 (c) The City’s policy arguments do not alter the result because “even the most formidable” policy arguments cannot “overcome” a clear statutory directive, Kloeckner v. Solis, 568 U. S. 41, 56, n. 4. While the City argues that allowing exceptions to the bar on appellate review of remand orders will impair judicial efficiency, that is the balance that Congress struck for cases removed pursuant to §1442 or §1443. And allowing full appellate review may actually help expedite some cases. The City’s contention that the Court’s reading of §1447(d) will invite defendants to frivolously add §1442 or §1443 to their other grounds for removal has already been addressed by other statutes and rules, such as §1447(c), which permits a district court to order a party to pay the costs and expenses of removal, and Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11(b)–(c), which authorizes courts to sanction frivolous arguments. The Court declines to consider the merits of the defendants’ removal grounds and remands for the Fourth Circuit to consider those matters in the first instance. Pp. 12–14.

952 F. 3d 452, vacated and remanded.

 Gorsuch, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Roberts, C. J., and Thomas, Breyer, Kagan, Kavanaugh, and Barrett, JJ., joined. Sotomayor, J., filed a dissenting opinion. Alito, J., took no part in the consideration or decision of the case.


Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Sixth Circuit

No. 19–930. Argued December 1, 2020—Decided May 17, 2021

Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Notice 2016–66 requires taxpayers and “material advisors” like petitioner CIC to report information about certain insurance agreements called micro-captive transactions. The consequences for noncompliance include both civil tax penalties and criminal prosecution. Prior to the Notice’s first reporting deadline, CIC filed a complaint challenging the Notice as invalid under the Administrative Procedure Act and asking the District Court to grant injunctive relief setting the Notice aside. The District Court dismissed the action as barred by the Anti-Injunction Act, which generally requires those contesting a tax’s validity to pay the tax prior to filing a legal challenge. A divided panel of the Sixth Circuit affirmed.

Held: A suit to enjoin Notice 2016–66 does not trigger the Anti-Injunction Act even though a violation of the Notice may result in a tax penalty. Pp. 5–16.

  (a) The Anti-Injunction Act, 26 U. S. C. §7421(a), provides that “no suit for the purpose of restraining the assessment or collection of any tax shall be maintained in any court by any person.” Absent the tax penalty, this case would be easy: the AntiInjunction Act would pose no barrier. A suit to enjoin a requirement to report information is not an action to restrain the “assessment or collection” of a tax, even if the information will help the IRS collect future tax revenue. See Direct Marketing Assn. v. Brohl, 575 U. S. 1, 9–10. The addition of a tax penalty complicates matters, but it does not ultimately change the answer. Under the AntiInjunction Act, a “suit[’s] purpose” depends on the action’s objective purpose, i.e., the relief the suit requests. Alexander v. “Americans United” Inc., 416 U. S. 752, 761. And CIC’s complaint seeks to set aside the Notice itself, not the tax penalty that may follow the Notice’s breach. The Government insists that no real difference exists between a suit to invalidate the Notice and one to preclude the tax penalty. But three aspects of the regulatory scheme here refute the idea that this is a tax action in disguise. First, the Notice imposes affirmative reporting obligations, inflicting costs separate and apart from the statutory tax penalty. Second, it is hard to characterize CIC’s suit as one to enjoin a tax when CIC stands nowhere near the cusp of tax liability; to owe any tax, CIC would have to first violate the Notice, the IRS would then have to find noncompliance, and the IRS would then have to exercise its discretion to levy a tax penalty. Third, the presence of criminal penalties forces CIC to bring an action in just this form, with the requested relief framed in just this manner. The Government’s proposed alternative procedure—having a party like CIC disobey the Notice and pay the resulting tax penalty before bringing a suit for a refund—would risk criminal punishment. All of these facts, taken together, show that CIC’s suit targets the Notice, not the downstream tax penalty. Thus, the AntiInjunction Act imposes no bar. Pp. 5–13.

  (b) Allowing CIC’s suit to proceed will not open the floodgates to pre-enforcement tax litigation. When taxpayers challenge ordinary taxes, assessed on earning income, or selling stock, or entering into a business transaction, the underlying activity is legal, and the sole target for an injunction is the command to pay a tax. In that scenario, the Anti-Injunction Act will always bar pre-enforcement review. And the analysis is the same for a challenge to a so-called regulatory tax—that is, a tax designed mainly to influence private conduct, rather than to raise revenue. The Anti-Injunction Act draws no distinction between regulatory and revenue-raising tax laws, Bob Jones Univ. v. Simon, 416 U. S. 725, 743, and the Anti-Injunction Act kicks in even if a plaintiff’s true objection is to a regulatory tax’s regulatory effect. By contrast, CIC’s suit targets neither a regulatory tax nor a revenue-raising one; CIC’s action challenges a reporting mandate separate from any tax. Because the IRS chose to address its concern about micro-captive agreements by imposing a reporting requirement rather than a tax, suits to enjoin that requirement fall outside the Anti-Injunction Act’s domain. Pp. 13–15.

925 F. 3d 247, reversed and remanded.

 Kagan, J., delivered the opinion for a unanimous Court. Sotomayor, J., and Kavanaugh, J., filed concurring opinions.


Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Fifth Circuit

No. 19–5807. Argued November 30, 2020—Decided May 17, 2021

In 2007, a Louisiana jury found petitioner Thedrick Edwards guilty of armed robbery, rape, and kidnapping. At the time, Louisiana law permitted non-unanimous jury verdicts if at least 10 of the 12 jurors found the defendant guilty. In Edwards’s case, 11 of 12 jurors returned a guilty verdict as to some crimes, and 10 of 12 jurors returned a guilty verdict as to others. After Edwards’s conviction became final on direct review, Edwards filed a federal habeas corpus petition, arguing that the non-unanimous jury verdict violated his constitutional right to a unanimous jury. The District Court rejected Edwards’s claim as foreclosed by Apodaca v. Oregon, 406 U. S. 404, and the Fifth Circuit denied a certificate of appealability. While Edwards’s petition for a writ of certiorari was pending, the Court repudiated Apodoca and held that a state jury must be unanimous to convict a criminal defendant of a serious offense. Ramos v. Louisiana, 590 U. S. ___. Edwards now argues that the Ramos jury-unanimity rule applies retroactively on federal collateral review.

Held: The Ramos jury-unanimity rule does not apply retroactively on federal collateral review. Pp. 5–20.

  (a) A new rule of criminal procedure applies to cases on direct review, even if the defendant’s trial has already concluded. But the Court has stated that new rules of criminal procedure ordinarily do not apply retroactively on federal collateral review. The Court has stated that a new procedural rule will apply retroactively on federal collateral review only if the new rule constitutes a “watershed” rule of criminal procedure. Teague v. Lane, 489 U. S. 288, 311 (plurality opinion). When the Teague Court first articulated that “watershed” exception, however, the Court stated that it was “unlikely” that such watershed “components of basic due process have yet to emerge.” Id., at 313. And in the 32 years since Teague, the Court has never found that any new procedural rule actually satisfies the purported exception. Pp. 5–7.

  (b) To determine whether Ramos applies retroactively on federal collateral review, the Court must first ask whether Ramos announced a new rule of criminal procedure and, if so, whether that rule falls within an exception for watershed rules of criminal procedure that apply retroactively on federal collateral review. The Court concludes that Ramos announced a new rule and that the jury-unanimity rule announced by Ramos does not apply retroactively on federal collateral review. Pp. 8–14.

   (1) The Ramos jury-unanimity rule is new because it was not “dictated by precedent existing at the time the defendant’s conviction became final,” Teague, 489 U. S., at 301, or “apparent to all reasonable jurists” at that time, Lambrix v. Singletary, 520 U. S. 518, 528. On the contrary, before Ramos, many courts interpreted Apodaca to allow for non-unanimous jury verdicts in state criminal trials. And the Ramos Court expressly repudiated Apodaca. Pp. 8–10.

   (2) The new rule announced in Ramos does not qualify as a “watershed” procedural rule that applies retroactively on federal collateral review. In an attempt to distinguish Ramos from the long line of cases where the Court has declined to retroactively apply new procedural rules, Edwards emphasizes three aspects of Ramos: (i) the significance of the jury-unanimity right; (ii) Ramos’s reliance on the original meaning of the Constitution; and (iii) the effect of Ramos in preventing racial discrimination in the jury process. But the Court has refused to retroactively apply other momentous cases with similar attributes. In DeStefano v. Woods, 392 U. S. 631, the Court declined to retroactively apply Duncan v. Louisiana, 395 U. S. 145, even though Duncan established the jury right itself. In Whorton v. Bockting, 549 U. S. 406, the Court declined to retroactively apply Crawford v. Washington, 541 U. S. 36, even though Crawford relied on the original meaning of the Sixth Amendment to restrict the use of hearsay evidence against criminal defendants. And in Allen v. Hardy, 478 U. S. 255 (per curiam), the Court declined to retroactively apply Batson v. Kentucky, 476 U. S. 79, even though Batson held that state prosecutors may not discriminate on the basis of race when exercising individual peremptory challenges. There is no good rationale for treating Ramos differently from Duncan, Crawford, and Batson. Pp. 10–14.

   (3) Given the Court’s numerous precedents holding that landmark and historic decisions announcing new rules of criminal procedure do not apply retroactively on federal collateral review, the Court acknowledges that the watershed exception is moribund and that no new rules of criminal procedure can satisfy the purported exception for watershed rules. Continuing to articulate a theoretical exception that never actually applies in practice offers false hope to defendants, distorts the law, misleads judges, and wastes the resources of defense counsel, prosecutors, and courts. Moreover, no one can reasonably rely on an exception that is non-existent in practice, so no reliance interests can be affected by forthrightly acknowledging reality. The watershed exception must “be regarded as retaining no vitality.” Herrera v. Wyoming, 587 U. S. ___, ___ (slip op., at 11) (internal quotation marks omitted). Pp. 14–15.


 Kavanaugh, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Roberts, C. J., Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, and Barrett, JJ., joined. Thomas, J., filed a concurring opinion, in which Gorsuch, J., joined. Gorsuch, J., filed a concurring opinion, in which Thomas, J., joined. Kagan, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which Breyer and Sotomayor, JJ., joined.