Utah Law Developments

JurisdictionUnited States,Federal,Utah
CitationVol. 28 No. 4 Pg. 36
Publication year2015
Utah Law Developments
Vol. 28 No. 4 Pg. 36
Utah Bar Journal
August, 2015

July, 2015

Appellate Highlights

Rodney R. Parker, Dani Cepernich, Nathanael Mitchell, Adam Pace, and Taymour Semnani.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following appellate cases of interest were recently decided by the United States Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, Utah Supreme Court, and Utah Court of Appeals.

Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London v. Garmin Int’l, Inc. 781 F.3d 1226 (10th Cir. March 27, 2015)

The district court refused to consider the evidence the appellant submitted in opposition to a motion for summary judgment because the evidence failed to conform to local rules regarding proper citation. The Tenth Circuit affirmed the grant of summary judgment, concluding that the district court did not abuse its discretion by refusing to consider evidence that was not submitted with citations in accordance with the local rules.

ACAP Financial, Inc. v. S.E.C. 783 F.3d 763 (10th Cir. April 3, 2015)

The Tenth Circuit denied this petition for review of sanctions issued by the Securities Exchange Commission against a Utah penny stock brokerage firm. The court rejected the petitioner’s argument that an intentional or knowing violation of a regulatory duty was required to find “egregious” conduct sufficient to support the all-capacity suspension sanction that the SEC issued. However, the court indicated that it may have been persuaded by other arguments challenging the propriety of the SEC’s decision-making process that the petitioner failed to make. One potential argument was that the SEC has failed to give sufficient content to the term “egregious” in its proceedings, leaving members of the securities industry without fair warning about when their conduct might cross the line. Another potential argument was that it was arbitrary and capricious for the SEC to use the adjudicative proceeding against the petitioner to expand its definition of “egregious” and then apply its newly expanded definition retroactively.

United States v. Huff 782 F.3d 1221 (10th Cir. April 14, 2015)

The district court suppressed evidence of firearms. The government moved the court to reconsider, citing a new legal basis for the seizure. The district court granted the request to reconsider. The defendant appealed the conviction, arguing that the district court abused its discretion when it reconsidered the motion in the absence of new evidence or a justification for failing to present the legal argument in the prior proceeding. As a matter of first impression, the Tenth Circuit held that a district court may reconsider a motion to suppress under a newly raised legal theory for the seizure. The court reasoned that the exclusionary rule had limited utility in this context, because it operates to deter police misconduct rather than “judicial or prosecutorial error or oversight.” Id. at 1225.

Caplinger v. Medtronic, Inc. 784 F.3d 1335 (10th Cir. April 21, 2015)

The Tenth Circuit held that the appellant’s state law tort claims against the manufacturer of a medical device were preempted under the Medical Device Amendments to the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act (MDA). The court discussed the convoluted standard for preemption under the MDA at length and emphasized the need for the plaintiff to have identified a parallel federal duty supporting her state law claims in order to avoid preemption. The court also rejected...

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