Law in the News: Nevada and Idaho want high court to put gay-marriage on hold

Washington (CNN) — Officials in Idaho and Nevada have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to stop same-sex marriage in those states, at least temporarily, by barring implementation of a federal appeals court ruling issued Tuesday.

The 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals struck down current bans on same-sex marriage in the two states, and later ordered its ruling to go into effect immediately.

Idaho officials then asked the high court to intervene on an emergency basis and block enforcement of that lower court mandate. Nevada then followed suit.

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Law in the News: Supreme Court’s Robust New Session Could Define Legacy of Chief Justice

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Monday returns to work to face a rich and varied docket, including cases on First Amendment rights in the digital age, religious freedom behind bars and the status of Jerusalem.

Those cases are colorful and consequential, but there are much bigger ones on the horizon.

In the coming weeks, the justices will most likely agree to decide whether there is a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, a question they ducked in 2013. They will also soon consider whether to hear a fresh and potent challenge to the Affordable Care Act, which barely survived its last encounter with the court in 2012.

Read Article on the New York Times

Law in the News: Courts Nix More Software Patents

Since the country’s top court struck down patents on a computer program that reduces risk in financial transactions, federal trial courts have rejected software patents in nine cases, according to Lex Machina, which supplies patent data to lawyers. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which sets much of the nation’s patent law, has nixed software patents in three others. Read article on Wall Street Journal.

Law in the News: Legal or not, the pot business is still wacky

NEW YORK (AP) — Legal or not, the business of selling weed in the U.S. is as wacky as ever.

The tangle of rules and regulations that govern whether and how it can be grown, bought and sold create complexity and ambiguity that cause major headaches for marijuana businesses — and enticing opportunities for those who want to exploit it.

“It’s a gray market industry, that’s just how it is,” says Kayvan Khalatbari, who owns a marijuana dispensary and a chain of pizza restaurants in Denver.

The big issue: the nation hasn’t decided whether marijuana is a dangerous illegal drug or not much worse than tobacco or alcohol. According to federal law, it is an illegal narcotic like heroin, with “no currently accepted medical use.” But recent legalization pushes have made it legal — for medical use — in 23 states and Washington D.C. In Colorado and Washington State, it can be bought just for fun.

Read article on SF Gates.