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Supreme Court Agrees to Reconsider Deference to Agency's Interpretation of Regulations

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Today, the Supreme Court agreed to consider overturning Auer (or Seminole Rock) deference in a case called Kisor v. Wilkie. Under Auer (or Seminole Rock) deference, the courts are compelled to defer to a government agency as to the interpretation of the regulations it issues.

CEI attorney Devin Watkins offered the following statement on today’s news:

Auer deference encourages agencies to write vague regulations so that they can make substantive decisions as to what the regulations mean long after the regulations are issued. This incentive for vague regulations undermines the rule of law as it prevents people from knowing what the regulations prohibit before they act. It is wonderful news for the rule of law that the Supreme Court is reconsidering the destructive Auer deference doctrine. Hopefully this is also the first step to reconsidering Chevron deference where agencies are given deference as to what statutes mean.”