The Ninth Circuit's San Francisco CourthouseUnlike some other Courts of Appeals (e.g., the D.C. and Second Circuits), the Ninth Circuit has a remarkably active en banc docket. Here at the En Banc Tracker, we keep tabs on all cases in which rehearing en banc has been granted. We also monitor others that may soon find their way to the en banc court, following petitions for rehearing in which at least one Ninth Circuit judge has demonstrated his or her interest by calling for a response.


Rojas v. FAA
The issue: The scope of FOIA Exemption 5, which protects from disclosure all “inter-agency or intra-agency” documents that “would not be available by law to a party … in litigation with the agency.” 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(5).
The panel (Wardlaw, Christen [dissenting], Molloy (D. Mont.)) had held that Exemption 5 applies to privileged documents prepared at an agency’s request by a contractor or consultant.
En banc panel: Thomas, Graber, Wardlaw, Rawlinson, Callahan, M. Smith, Ikuta, Watford, Hurwitz, Collins, Bumatay.
Current status: Rehearing granted 1/30/20; argued 9/22/20.

Lorenzo-Lopez v. Barr
The issue: Whether a notice to appear that omits the time and place at which removal proceedings would occur, but is later supplemented by a document containing that information, suffices to trigger the stop-time rule in 8 U.S.C. § 1229(a).
The panel (D. Nelson, Callahan [dissenting], Korman (E.D.N.Y) held that it did not.
En banc panel: Thomas, Berzon, Rawlinson, Christen, Watford, Bennett, Miller, Bade, Collins, Hunsaker, VanDyke.
Current status: Rehearing granted 1/23/20; case stayed pending Supreme Court's decision in Niz-Chavez v. Barr.

United States v. Orona
The issue: Whether a conviction for aggravated assault under an Arizona criminal statute that encompasses reckless conduct qualifies as an Armed Career Criminal Act “violent felony.”
The panel (Hawkins, M. Smith, Hurwitz) held that it did not.
Current status: Rehearing granted 11/18/19; case stayed pending the Supreme Court’s decision in Borden v. United States, No. 19-5410.

Young v. Hawaii
The issue: Whether the Second Amendment precludes a state from prohibiting individuals from openly carrying firearms outside their homes.
The panel (O’Scannlain, Clifton [dissenting], Ikuta) held that it does.
En banc panel:  Thomas, O'Scannlain, McKeown, Wardlaw, Fletcher, Clifton, Bybee, Callahan, Ikuta, Friedland, R. Nelson.
Current status: Rehearing granted 2/8/19; case stayed pending the Supreme Court’s decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc, v. City of New York, No. 18-820; stay lifted 4/30/20; argued 9/24/20.


United States v. Lozoya
The issue: Whether venue in the Central District of California was proper in a prosecution for an assault that took place on a flight from Minnesota to Los Angeles, but not in California airspace.
The panel (M. Smith, Owens [dissenting], Settle (W.D. Wash.) held that it was not.
The en banc Court: disagreed, holding that it was. 

Tovar v. Zuchowski
The issue: When a spousal relationship must exist for a spouse to be eligible for derivative U-visa status. 
The panel (N.R. Smith, Watford [dissenting], R. Nelson) had held that the BIA’s regulation requiring that the relationship exist at the time of initial visa application was, under Chevron, a reasonable interpretation of the governing statute. 
The en banc Court: disgreed, holding instead that the BIA's regulation reflected an unreasonable interpretation of the governing statute.

United States v. Collazo
The issue: When a defendant can be held liable under 21 U.S.C. § 841(b) for the drug quantities attributable to his or her coconspirators.
The panel (Wardlaw, Bea, Murphy (E.D. Mich.), after holding argument, ordered the parties to brief whether the case should be heard initially en banc.
The en banc Court: held that the government need not prove the defendant knew the drug type and quantities attributable to his or her coconspirators.

United States v. Bacon
The issue:  The proper remedy when the Court of Appeals concludes that a criminal defendant’s expert testimony was erroneously excluded as irrelevant and that Court cannot discern whether the error was harmless.
The panel (Watford, Bennet, Rakoff (S.D.N.Y)) held that a new trial is required, but all three joined a separate concurrence criticizing the Ninth Circuit precedent that mandated that remedy, contending that the remedy should instead be to conditionally vacate the judgment and remand with instructions for the district court to consider whether the testimony would have been otherwise excluded.
The en banc Court:  reversed this prior precedent, holding that there was no bright-line rule governing the remedy in these circumstances, and remanding to the panel to exercise its discretion in determining the proper remedy here.  

Torres v. Barr
The issue: Whether Congress’ two-year reprieve for immigrants residing in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands at the time the United States imposed its immigration laws on the territory in 2009 applied to those immigrants who “at the time of application for admission” lacked a “valid entry document.”
The panel (Wardlaw, Berzon, Bennett) held that it did not, but all three judges joined a concurrence contending that the Ninth Circuit precedent compelling the panel to reach that result was wrongly decided. 
The en banc Court:   overruled that prior precedent and held the petitioner was not removable on grounds of having lacked a valid entry document.



Lambert v. Saul
The issue:  Whether, in Social Security disability benefits cases, a claimant’s prior disability determination entitles her to a presumption of continuing disability.
The panel (Graber, Bress, Dawson [W.D. Ak.]), deferring to the Social Security Administration’s intervening interpretation of the statute (which contradicted the Ninth Circuit’s prior interpretation) held that it does not. 
Current status:  Awaiting Defendant-Appellee’s response.

Ramos v. Wolf
The issues:  Whether Congress stripped jurisdiction over all APA claims challenging Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designations, and whether the district court abused its discretion in concluding that the plaintiffs had established a likelihood of success on the merits of their Equal Protection challenge to their TPS terminations.
The panel (Callahan, Christen [dissenting], R. Nelson [concurring]) answered both questions in the affirmative.
Current status:  Awaiting Defendants-Appellants’ response.

Ford v. Peery
The issue:  Whether a California prisoner is entitled to federal habeas relief in a case in which the prosecutor, in his closing argument, told the jury that the presumption of innocence was no longer applicable.
The panel (W. Fletcher, R. Nelson [dissenting], Molloy [D. Mont.]) held that he was.
Current status:  Awaiting Petitioner-Appellant’s response.


Velaquez-Gaspar v. Barr
The issue:  Whether substantial evidence supported the BIA’s determination that the Guatemalan government was unable to protect the petitioner from further domestic abuse, notwithstanding the petitioner’s own contrary testimony and the BIA’s failure to address her credibility. 
The panel (Paez [dissenting], Callahan, VanDyke [concurring]) upheld the BIA’s determination.
Current status:   Awaiting vote; Respondent’s response filed 12/11/20.

City of Oakland v. Wells Fargo & Company
The issue:  Whether Oakland has statutory standing under the Fair Housing Act to sue Wells Fargo for its allegedly discriminatory lending practices.
The panel (Cole [CA6], Gould, Murguia) held that it does.
Current status: Awaiting vote; Plaintiff-appellee’s response filed 11/3/20.

Silva v. Barr
The issue:  Whether petty theft under Cal. Penal Code section 484(a) is a “crime involving moral turpitude.”
The panel:  (Berzon, Ikuta, Lemelle [E.D. La.]) held that it was, while questioning the precedent that compelled that result.
Current status:  Awaiting vote; Respondent’s response filed 12/11/20.

Duncan v. Becerra
The issue:  Whether California’s ban on large capacity magazines violates the Second Amendment. 
The panel (Callahan, Lee, Lynn [N.D. Texas, dissenting]) held that it does. 
Current status:  Awaiting vote; Plaintiffs-appellees' response filed 9/18.

East Bay Sanctuary Covenant v. Trump
The issue:  Whether the district court correctly issued a nationwide preliminary injunction against a rule stripping asylum eligibility from migrants who cross into the country from Mexico between designated ports of entry.
The panel (Fernandez [concurring], Paez, Fletcher) held that it did.
Current status:  Awaiting vote; Plaintiffs-appellees’ response filed 7/21/20.

Juliana v. United States
The issue: Whether plaintiffs-appellees—a group of children—lack Article III standing to challenge the federal government’s actions contributing to climate change because of their inability to demonstrate redressability.
The panel (Murguia, Hurwitz, Staton (C.D. Cal) [dissenting]) held the plaintiffs lack standing.
Current status: Awaiting vote; Defendants-Appellants’ response filed 3/24/20.


Northern Alaska Environmental Center v. U.S. Department of the Interior
The issue:  Whether a management plan was an “ongoing” federal action for purposes of NEPA’s supplementation requirements.
The panel (M. Smith, N.R. Smith, Tunheim [D. Minn.]) held that it was. 
Current status:  Rehearing denied 12/22/20.

Southcentral Foundation v. Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium
The issue:  Whether a tribal health organization had sufficiently alleged Article III standing in challenging the governance of the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium.
The panel (Gould, Bea, Murguia) held that it did, focusing on the plaintiff organization’s information injury and statutory right of participation. 
Current status:  Rehearing denied 12/21/20.

Smith v. Baker
The issue:  Whether either the jury’s improper consideration of aggravating factors, or trial counsel’s deficient performance, prejudiced the capital habeas petitioner. 
The panel (N.R. Smith [concurring], Murguia, Christen) held that they did not. 
Current status:  Rehearing denied 12/21/20.  

Harvest Rock Church Inc. v. Newsom
The issue:  Whether California’s pandemic-related restrictions are unconstitutional as applied to in-person worship services.
The panel (O’Scannlain [dissenting], Rawlinson, Christen) denied the Plaintiffs’-appellants emergency motion for an injunction against the state restrictions.
Current status:  The panel vacated its denial and remanded; rehearing petition denied as moot 12/3/20.

Vega-Anguiano v. Barr
The issue: Whether Petitioner could challenge ICE’s order reinstating of a prior removal order on the ground that the prior removal order was invalid. 
The panel (Fletcher, Callahan [dissent], Christen) held that he could.
Current status: Rehearing denied 11/24/20.

Benson v. Chappell
The issue:  Whether the California Supreme Court’s decision denying a capital habeas petitioner’s ineffective assistance of counsel claim was reasonable. 
The panel (Callahan, Bea, Murguia [dissenting in part]) held that it was. 
Current status:  Rehearing denied 11/20/20.

National Family Farm Coalition v. EPA
The issue:  Whether the EPA’s registration of a challenged pesticide had violated the Endangered Species Act. 
The panel (N.R. Smith, Watford [dissenting]; R. Nelson) held that it did not.
Current status:  Rehearing denied 11/18/20.

Kia Davidson v. O’Reilly Auto Enterprises, LLC
The issue:  Whether the district court abused its discretion by refusing to extend the deadline for the plaintiff to file a motion for class certification. 
The panel (Boggs [CA6], Ikuta, Christen [dissenting in part]) held that it did not. 
Current status:  Rehearing denied 11/13/20.

AMA Multimedia, LLC v. Wanat
The issue:  Whether and how federal courts may exercise personal jurisdiction over foreign defendants that distribute online video content.
The panel (Gould [dissenting], Ikuta, R. Nelson) held that the personal jurisdiction was lacking because the defendant did not expressly aim its allegedly tortious conduct at the United States.
Current status:  Rehearing denied 11/9/20.

United States v. Kelley
The issue:  Whether the First Step Act, which granted re-sentencings to those sentenced of crack-cocaine offenses under prior versions of the Sentencing Guidelines, permits district courts to consider other subsequent changes in the law.  
The panel (Ikuta, R. Nelson, and Oliver [N.D. Ohio]) held that it did not. 
Current status:  Rehearing denied 11/9/20.

Nutrition Distribution LLC v. IronMag Labs, LLC
The issue:  Whether Rule 4(a)’s 30-day requirement for filing a notice of appeal is jurisdictional. 
The panel (M. Smith, Bade, Bress) held that it was.
Current status:  Rehearing denied 10/29/20.

Pakdel v. San Francisco
The issue:  Whether plaintiffs challenging local regulations as unconstitutional takings must first properly use available administrative procedures to seek a variance from those regulations.
The panel (Gould, Bea [dissenting], Friedland) held that they must.
Current status:  Rehearing denied 10/13/20.

Booker v. C.R. Bard, Inc. 
The issue:  Whether the express preemption provision of the Medical Device Amendments to the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Acts, 12 U.S.C. § 360k(a), applies to Class II medical devices. 
The panel (Graber, Hurwitz, Miller) rejected the Defendant-appellant’s preemption arguments. 
Current status:  Rehearing denied 10/7/20.

United States v. Gagarin
The issue:  Whether the aggravated identity theft offense, 18 U.S.C. § 1028A, encompasses individuals who use another person’s identification in a crime even when that second person consented to the use.
The panel (Gould, Bea, Friedland [concurring]) held that it does.
Current status:  Rehearing denied 10/1/20.