It can be hard to get the nine justices of the U.S. Supreme Court to agree on something. Luckily for lawyers, they only need to convince five to win.
That’s what lawyer Paul Hughes was thinking while framing an appeal for a Vietnam veteran who was denied retroactive disability benefits for post-traumatic stress disorder last term.
Hughes and his former team at Mayer Brown LLP designed their petition as a challenge to the court’s 1997 decision in Auer v. Robbins. Auer was a mammoth of administrative law, standing for the proposition that judges should almost always defer to how federal agencies interpret their own rules.
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