U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision to Overrule Chevron Changes the Landscape of Regulatory Litigation | Key Takeaways

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The recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Chevron v. NRDC in the Loper Bright v. Raimondo case marks a significant shift in the way courts will interpret agency actions moving forward. The newly established Loper Bright doctrine emphasizes the need for courts to independently assess whether an agency is acting within its statutory authority, as required by the Administrative Procedure Act.

Chevron’s two-step framework, which has been in place for over 40 years, allowed agencies a wide berth in interpreting statutes and often led to varying interpretations based on political objectives. The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Chevron was based on the belief that the doctrine was incompatible with the APA and interfered with the courts’ duty to interpret laws enacted by Congress.

While the end of Chevron does not mean the end of deference to agency decisions, it does signal a shift in the balance of power between agencies and the judiciary. Moving forward, agencies will have to be more mindful of how they interpret statutes, as courts will no longer automatically defer to their decisions under the Chevron framework.

Overall, the Loper Bright decision will likely have a gradual but transformative impact on the regulatory landscape, affecting how laws are written by Congress, interpreted by the courts, and implemented by agencies. While some may fear that this shift will weaken the regulatory state, it is more likely to lead to a more balanced and thoughtful approach to agency decision-making.

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