Supreme Court decision in West Virginia v. EPA a professional victory for Tom Lampman


The Supreme Court’s recent opinion in the West Virginia v. EPA case is poised to be a landmark decision in administrative law, as it clarifies the scope of regulatory agencies’ power to address issues of major political or economic significance. The “major questions doctrine” defined in this opinion is grounded in a presumption that Congress does not delegate major policy decisions to executive agencies to resolve via rulemaking. Therefore, an executive agency may only exercise that level of discretion if clearly authorized to do so by an act of Congress.  

Prior to joining McDonald Hopkins, attorney Tom Lampman served as Assistant Attorney General and Assistant Solicitor General for the Office of the West Virginia Attorney General, and was heavily involved in the strategy, briefing, and argument preparation for the state’s side of this case going all the way back to litigation in the DC Circuit Court.

“I’m extremely proud and honored to have helped litigate such an important issue in our nation’s highest court,” said Tom. In addition to having authored various briefings and documents throughout the case, Tom, now an Associate in McDonald Hopkins’ Litigation Department, served as second chair at DC Circuit Court oral arguments and would have served as third or fourth chair at the U.S. Supreme Court in-person arguments were it not for COVID restrictions.

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