October 7, 2010
Handicapping the Upcoming Supreme Court Business Cases
Does the Roberts Court favor business? Law.com has a rundown of many of the pending cases, specifically identifying ten as business cases. Of those, the three that interest me the most are Matrixx Initiatives v. Siracusano, Janus Capital Group v. First Derivative Traders, and FCC v. AT&T. ScotusBlog sets out the relevant issues in "plain english." I'll offer my predictions here, based solely on the theory that the Roberts Court favors business:
Matrixx: "Does a drug company violate federal securities laws by failing to disclose reports of patients having adverse reactions to its drugs when the number of incidents was not statistically significant?" Predicted answer: No.
Janus Capital: "When a corporation makes false statements in a prospectus in violation of federal securities laws, can victims also sue companies that assisted the corporation in writing the prospectus?" Predicted answer: No.
FCC v. AT&T: "The Freedom of Information Act has an exception that permits the government to withhold information gathered during law enforcement investigations if disclosing the information would constitute an invasion of 'personal privacy.' Does the exemption apply to protect the privacy of a corporation?" Predicted answer: Yes.
Obviously, a "business wins" approach to handicapping Supreme Court cases is so simplistic as to beg being mocked. Nonetheless, how much predictive power does it have to have before we have to start taking it seriously?