Native American

  • January 18, 2017

    Tribe Says NIGC Flouted Court Order In Gaming Eligibility Row

    The Fort Sill Apache Tribe on Tuesday moved to force the National Indian Gaming Commission to comply with a D.C. federal court's order requiring it to reconsider denying the tribe's bid to conduct gambling, and said the commission needs to explain why it should not be held in contempt for disobeying.

  • January 17, 2017

    Enviros Urge Justices To Pass On Polar Bear Habitat Appeal

    The Center for Biological Diversity is urging the U.S. Supreme Court not to upend a Ninth Circuit decision backing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's critical habitat designation for the polar bear, saying the state of Alaska and other challengers have made too big of a deal out of the size of the habitat designation.

  • January 17, 2017

    Offensive TMs At High Court: Everything You Need To Know

    The highest-profile trademark case in years will be argued before the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, pitting a rock band and a billion-dollar football team against the federal government — and the First Amendment against laws limiting offensive speech. To get you up to speed, here's everything you need to know.

  • January 17, 2017

    Trump's Interior Pick Says Climate Change 'Undisputable'

    Rep. Ryan Zinke, R-Mont., Donald Trump's nominee for interior secretary, parted ways with earlier comments by the president-elect by saying during Senate confirmation hearings on Tuesday that he doesn’t believe climate change is a hoax, but suggested that there is still a place for fossil fuel drilling on federal lands.

  • January 17, 2017

    Fed. Gov’t Must Pay $250K In Row Over Woman's ER Death

    The federal government must pay more than $250,000 in damages in a wrongful death suit brought by the family of a 34-year-old woman who died in the Fort Belknap Indian Health Service emergency room after an asthma attack, a Montana federal judge ruled Friday.

  • January 17, 2017

    Tribe Gets Partial Win In BNSF Oil Haul Spat

    A Washington federal judge concluded Friday that BNSF Railway Co. breached a right-of-way easement agreement with the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community by increasing crude oil shipments across reservation land, but that the tribe must ask a different forum to limit the railroad company’s activity.

  • January 17, 2017

    Dakota Access Urges Judge To Halt New Enviro Review

    Developers of the controversial Dakota Access pipeline on Monday urged a D.C. federal judge to block a more stringent federal environmental review until he rules on its claim that it has already received the necessary permission to complete construction under Lake Oahe in North Dakota.

  • January 17, 2017

    9th Circ. Won't Halt Ariz. Highway Project Near Tribal Land

    The Ninth Circuit has rejected a bid from the Gila River Indian Community to halt work on a Phoenix-area highway project as it appeals a district court ruling that federal and state agencies took no shortcuts on environmental reviews when giving the project the go-ahead, while also consolidating the appeal with a similar one.

  • January 17, 2017

    EPA Says It Can't Pay For Gold King Mine Spill Claims

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Friday said that it can't pay for any tort claims against it for its role in triggering the 2015 Gold King Mine disaster, despite the agency’s long-standing assertion that it would take full responsibility for handling the spill.

  • January 17, 2017

    BLM Venting Rules Take Effect As Court Case Continues

    Three Western states and industry groups lost a bid Monday to block a Bureau of Land Management rule aimed at limiting methane releases from drilling operations on federal and Native American lands from taking effect Tuesday while a Wyoming federal judge hears the merits of the case.

  • January 13, 2017

    CashCall, Western Sky Reach $1.25M Deal With Fla. AG

    Lenders CashCall Inc. and Western Sky Financial LLC have agreed to a settle yet another state action over charging allegedly illegal interest rates, this time paying a total of $1.25 million to the state of Florida with around $11 million for borrowers, Attorney General Pam Bondi announced Friday.

  • January 13, 2017

    Mich. Gov. Urges Dismissal Of Tribe's Casino Land Suit

    Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder asked a federal court Friday to throw out the Bay Mills Indian Community’s suit seeking to establish that it can operate a casino off its reservation, saying a 1997 federal law didn’t automatically allow the tribe to conduct gambling on a parcel of land it bought.

  • January 13, 2017

    Utah Town Urges High Court To Hear Tribal Boundary Dispute

    A Utah city has urged the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its petition challenging a decision in a Native American tribe’s lawsuit over its reservation boundaries, saying a Tenth Circuit ruling directly contradicted high court precedent by keeping the city in the litigation and wrongly reassigned a district court judge in a bid to speed up the protracted case.

  • January 13, 2017

    Tribe Says Leaders' Indictment Boosts Suit Against Bank

    The Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians told a California federal judge Thursday that the recent indictment of three former tribal officials on embezzlement charges bolsters its case against a bank that allegedly knew the ex-leaders were exploiting their positions to steal from the tribe.

  • January 13, 2017

    Tribe's Ex-GC Changes Mind On Alston & Bird DQ

    The former general counsel for the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida withdrew his bid to disqualify Alston & Bird LLP from representing the tribe in a battle over a failed embezzlement suit against its former lawyers and recently re-elected chairman, saying Thursday that the matter underlying the request had been resolved.

  • January 13, 2017

    Jason Galanis To Plead Guilty In $60M Tribal Bond Scheme

    Serial fraudster Jason Galanis is expected to plead guilty to his role in a scheme to induce a tribal entity to issue more than $60 million in bonds so he could steal the proceeds to finance previous criminal defense costs, his attorney revealed Friday in a New York federal court.

  • January 13, 2017

    DOI OKs First New Alaska Tribal Trust Land In Decades

    The U.S. Department of the Interior said on Friday that it will take a parcel of land into trust for the federally recognized Craig Tribal Association in Alaska, marking the first land-into-trust action for a tribe in the state since the agency changed a rule that had blocked such acquisitions.

  • January 12, 2017

    Fla. Gaming Bill Eyes Seminole Deal, Slots, Fantasy Sports

    A comprehensive gaming bill filed Thursday in the Florida state Senate specifies a path to ending litigation and approving a new compact with the Seminole Tribe, regulating fantasy sports, and finding a balance between expanding opportunities for slot machines statewide while reducing overall gaming permits.

  • January 12, 2017

    Tribal Students File Civil Rights Suit Over Failing School

    A group of students at a federally funded school for Havasupai Tribe members and the Native American Disability Law Center hit the Bureau of Indian Education with a suit in Arizona federal court Thursday, alleging the school falls far short of providing the education the students are owed under federal law.

  • January 12, 2017

    Navajos Say Contractor Can't Escape Gold King Spill Suit

    The Navajo Nation shot back Wednesday at a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency contractor’s attempt to escape a liability suit over the Gold King Mine spill, saying the contractor was directing remediation activities and conducting operations at the site when the disaster occurred.

Expert Analysis

  • Bishop Criteria: The Future Of Indian Water Settlements

    Ryan A. Smith

    After decades of negotiation, the Blackfeet Tribe of Montana has successfully moved its water settlement through the House of Representatives, thanks in part to the new "Bishop Criteria" for Indian water settlement legislation. Although the new process is difficult and exacting, it nonetheless provides a path where none existed before, says Ryan Smith of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck LLP.

  • The Path Forward For Industrial Hemp In Indian Country

    Michael D. Reif

    Historically, the legality of growing industrial hemp has been complicated by the commodity's classification as a Schedule 1 drug. As the movement for national legalization marches on, tribes interested in growing hemp should take steps to ensure that they do not lose ground relative to non-Indian farmers, says Michael Reif of Robins Kaplan LLP.

  • 2016 Environmental Case Law Highlights: Part 3

    Anthony B. Cavender

    The final article in this series reviews some of the most significant environmental cases of 2016 decided in the Tenth and Eleventh Circuits, as well as several state supreme courts. Anyone who reads these cases will be impressed by the painstaking approach these courts apply to some of the most vexing and complicated cases on their dockets, says Anthony Cavender of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

  • Be Prepared For Law Firm Data Breach Litigation

    Scott Vernick

    The April 2016 leak of "Panama Papers" documents from law firm Mossack Fonseca removed any doubt that the threat of cyberattacks against the legal industry is more than hypothetical. While the case law on law firm data breach litigation has largely yet to be written, there are certain fundamental tenets worth reviewing, say Scott Vernick and Peter Buckley of Fox Rothschild LLP.

  • 2016 Environmental Case Law Highlights: Part 2

    Anthony B. Cavender

    In part 2 of this three-part review of 2016's most significant environmental cases, Anthony Cavender of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP highlights decisions from the Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth and Ninth Circuits. In particular, these cases reflect issues common to the energy-producing states as well as additional Endangered Species Act decisions.

  • 7 Legal Industry Predictions For 2017

    Haley Altman

    Since 2008, the legal relationship dynamic has consistently evolved, leading clients to demand more "value" for services received. In 2017, investment in and adoption of new technology and prioritizing cybersecurity will lead to an increase in billable hours and shifts in realization rates, says Haley Altman of Doxly.

  • 2016 Environmental Case Law Highlights: Part 1

    Anthony B. Cavender

    In part 1 of his three-part review of 2016's most significant environmental cases, Anthony Cavender of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP analyzes decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court and the D.C., First, Second, Third and Fourth Circuits, noting, among other observations, the unusual number of Endangered Species Act cases decided by the D.C. Circuit.

  • Top 12 Mississippi Gaming Stories Of 2016

    Tommy Shepherd

    Tommy Shepherd of Jones Walker LLP discusses recent developments in the Mississippi gaming industry, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2017.

  • The Future Of Legal Marijuana: Post-Election Outlook

    Richard L. Spees

    Following the 2016 election, marijuana legalization is spreading across states and becoming less important at the federal level. While marijuana is not yet treated like tobacco and alcohol, the federal policy environment seems unlikely to impose significant restrictions on access in the near future, say Richard Spees and Joshua Mandell of Akerman LLP.

  • Building Momentum For The Pay Equity Movement In BigLaw

    Stephanie A. Scharf

    A decade’s worth of multiple bar association initiatives, conferences, corporate law summits, detailed research reports and opinion pieces on the pay gap has seemingly fallen on the deaf ears of BigLaw. However, recent events presage substantial movement toward pay equity in law firms, say Stephanie Scharf of Scharf Banks Marmor LLC, Michele Coleman Mayes, general counsel for the New York Public Library, and Wendi Lazar of Outten & Golden LLP.