On May 7, 2024, Law360 published an article by LSSC's Kali J. Schellenberg and Jon L. Cochran, analyzing 100 recent federal court decisions citing Chevron U.S.A. Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, and offering insight into the potential consequences of a much-anticipated Supreme Court ruling.

For four decades, Chevron has defined the dynamics between courts and regulatory bodies, establishing a framework whereby courts defer to an agency’s reasonable interpretation of a statute so long as Congress has not spoken directly on the precise question at issue. However, in January 2024, the Supreme Court heard two cases challenging the Chevron framework. Questioning and discussions during oral arguments raised various possibilities for reversing or narrowing the doctrine. As the Supreme Court’s decision looms, it heralds the potential dawn of a new era.

To gain insights into the potential landscape post-Chevron, the authors scrutinized 100 recent federal court rulings in Pennsylvania and New Jersey referencing Chevron. These cases reveal trends at each step of the Chevron framework, underscoring the widespread implications of any modifications to the doctrine. However, as the authors caution, the precise magnitude of these effects hinges on the way the Supreme Court chooses to narrow or revoke the Chevron precedent.

Given this evolving landscape, the authors advise that clients and lawyers confronting critical regulatory questions should begin evaluating their options now, rather than wait for a post-Chevron race to the courthouse.