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2 Is the Loneliest Circuit: Only 1 SCOTUS Grant So Far This Term

By Mark Wilson, Esq. on October 13, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Thus far, the Supreme Court has granted cert. to only one case from the Second Circuit. Gelboim v. Bank of America is a civil action brought by several investors against several banks, arising out of the LIBOR scandal of a few years ago.

LIBOR -- the London Interbank Offered Rate -- is an important interest rate in worldwide banking. It was discovered that several banks colluded to manipulate the interest rate, harming investors by giving them a lower interest rate on financial products than they would have had otherwise.

SCOTUS Week at FindLaw

Litigation, Litigation Everywhere

The LIBOR litigation was multidistrict, meaning different suits were filed in different federal district courts around the country.

The petitioners in this case had filed suit in the Southern District of New York. Their suit, like many of the others, contained antitrust claims -- but unlike some others, consisted only of antitrust claims. The district court ultimately dismissed the antitrust claims in petitioner's case and at least 15 more cases. So they appealed. No problem, right?

Not so much. In a one paragraph order, the Second Circuit dismissed the appeal, as it lacked jurisdiction because the district court never issued a final order disposing of all claims.

Seeking Cert.

To the Supreme Court, Gelboim argued that the consolidation of cases was a logistical convenience that didn't merge the different suits into a single case. Gelboim said that the dismissal of the antitrust claims -- which were the only claims in her case -- is a "final decision" under 28 USC § 1291.

The question for the Court, which will hear oral arguments in this case December 9, is whether dismissal of an action that has been consolidated with other suits is immediately appealable.

Disclosure: The LIBOR rate is calculated by Thomson Reuters, which owns FindLaw.

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