U.S. Supreme Court

Case Status


Docket Number


2012 Term

Oral Argument Date

January 16, 2013


Questions Presented

Whether, contrary to the decisions of at least two other circuits, and in light of this Court’s guidance, a court should apply Chevron to review an agency’s determination of its own jurisdiction.

Case Updates

Supreme Court applies Chevron deference to agency's determinations of its own jurisdiction

May 20, 2013

The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Fifth Circuit and held that courts must apply Chevron deference to an agency's determination of its own jurisdiction.

U.S. Chamber files amicus brief

November 26, 2012

NCLC urged the Supreme Court to hold that an agency's determination of its own jurisdiction is not entitled to deference under Chevron v. Natural Resources Defense Council. This case arises from a dispute between local governments and the FCC about the agency's authority to regulate state and local land-use decisions regarding the placement of wireless communications facilities. NCLC argued in its amicus brief that de novo judicial review of agency assertions of jurisdiction have served as an essential check against agency aggrandizement of power. That safeguard protects not only regulated entities, but also helps preserve the proper allocation of authority within the federal government and the relationship between the federal government and the States. Regardless whether an agency assertion of jurisdiction is warranted in a given case, jurisdictional questions are sufficiently important to require courts to make their own independent determination. NCLC warned that expanding the scope of “Chevron's domain”to agency jurisdictional determinations would have vast and troubling implications for the administrative state.

Case Documents