Earlier this month, the Wisconsin Supreme Court accepted the parties’ voluntary dismissal in Weissman v. Tyson Prepared Foods, 2012AP2196, assuring the precedential status of the court of appeals’ decision. Tyson addressed the compensability under Wisconsin law of time that employees spend pre-shift and post-shift preparing for work by putting on and taking off standard personal protective gear such as gloves, safety shoes, hairnets, and coats.
In a potentially far-reaching decision, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals on April 9, 2014, put individuals, corporations, and others on notice that when they email a public official, their identities and email addresses are likely to be discoverable upon request.
The Supreme Court will now decide whether a 2006 Seventh Circuit decision on Class Action Fairness Act pleading requirements was correct. The Court granted certiorari today in a case that will resolve whether defendants filing removal notices under CAFA, 28 U.S.C. § 1332(d), have to plead “evidence supporting their calculation” that the amount in controversy exceeds $5 million. Dart Cherokee Basin Op’g Co., LLC v. Owens, No. 13-719. A divided panel of the Tenth Circuit refused to hear an appeal of a Kansas district court’s remand order articulating the pleading requirement in these words. The Court of Appeals then refused by an evenly divided vote to review the panel’s decision en banc. 730 F.3d 1234 (2013). The Supreme Court will now resolve the issue.
Late last year the Seventh Circuit issued its decision in Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, Inc. v. Van Hollen, No. 13-2726 (7th Cir. Dec. 20, 2013), a constitutional challenge to a new Wisconsin law (known as Act 37) that requires a doctor performing an abortion to have admitting privileges at a hospital no more than 30 miles from the abortion clinic. The decision upheld a preliminary injunction enjoining the enforcement of the law and generated a considerable amount of news and commentary.
The latest bit of “commentary” came from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in the form of an opinion issued yesterday (written by Judge Edith H. Jones) in Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas Surgical Health Services v. Abbott, No. 13-51008 (5th Cir. Mar. 27, 2014), which upheld Texas’s analogue to Act 37. Only time will tell, but a circuit split could be in the offing.
Each year, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals releases detailed statistics about its caseload from the last year. The data offer an interesting insight into the work of that court.