Today marks the beginning of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2012-2013 term. The first case of the new term, which was heard today, is a challenge of the 1789 Alien Tort Statute, which has been an important tool for human rights organizations seeking to end overseas humans rights abuses (briefs in the case are available online), and the Court has already agreed to hear a number of other interesting and controversial cases this term, including a case challenging University of Texas’ affirmative action practices and two cases regarding the use of drug-sniffing dogs.
As the term progresses, there are a number of resources available for those who want to keep up-to-date on the Supreme Courts activities and decisions. The first place to look is the Supreme Court’s website, which offers calendars, transcripts, and audio recordings of arguments as well as the latest slip opinions. If you want to read the briefs in cases that will be heard this term, many can already be found online on the American Bar Association’s Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases website. As the term progresses, you can also refer to the Oyez Project for audio recordings of cases, commentary on the issues presented, and summaries of other pertinent information about the cases.