Supreme Court rules on consolidated appeals
Supreme Court rules on consolidated appeals

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] unanimously Wednesday in Gelboim v. Bank of American Corp. [JURIST report] to reverse the decision of the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The court’s ruling states, “The order dismissing [the parties’] case in its entirety removed Gelboim and Zacher from the consolidated proceeding, thereby triggering their right to appeal under [28 USC] § 1291 [text].” It went on to explain that because the cistrict court’s order dismissing the Gelboim-Zacher complaint was a final decision, the petitioners in this case were no longer participants in the consolidated proceedings. While the banks contended that no right to appeal exists until a § 1407 consolidation ends, the court found that this would cause too much confusion for plaintiffs left to figure out which events would trigger the 30-day period for taking an appeal.

In December the Supreme Court heard oral arguments [day call, PDF] in this case on whether and in what circumstances the dismissal of an action that has been consolidated with other suits is immediately appealable. The Second Circuit determined [opinion, PDF] sua sponte that it “lack[ed] jurisdiction over these appeals because a final order ha[d] not been issued by the district court as contemplated by 28 USC § 1291, and the orders appealed from did not dispose of all claims in the consolidated action.” The case was one of two in which the court herd oral arguments on December 9, with arguments in Alabama Department of Revenue v. CSX Transportation, Inc. [transcript, PDF; JURIST report] also heard that day.