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Misconduct Report: December 2014

Peter Hall

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Peter Hall
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Current Court Information:
United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Title:   Judge
Position:   Seat #5
Station:   VT
Appointed by:   George W. Bush
Active:   7/7/2004-Present
Preceded by:   Fred Parker
Personal History
Born:   1948
Hometown:   Hartford, CT
Undergraduate:   Univeristy of North Carolina, 1971
Law School:   Cornell Law, 1977
Grad. School:   Univeristy of North Carolina, 1974

Peter W. Hall is a federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He joined the court in 2004 after being nominated by President George W. Bush. Prior to his appointment, Hall was a U.S. Attorney for the District of Vermont.[1]


Hall graduated from North Carolina with his bachelor's degree in 1971 and his Master's degree in 1974 before going to Cornell Law. He earned his J.D. degree in 1977.[1]

Professional career

Hall was a law clerk for Judge Albert Coffrin for the District of Vermont from 1977 to 1978 before serving in the U.S. Attorney's Office. Hall was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Vermont from 1978 to 1982 and then served as Assistant U.S. Attorney from 1982 to 1986.[1] Hall was in private practice in Vermont from 1986 to 2001 before being nominated by President George W. Bush as U.S. Attorney for the District of Vermont from 2001 to 2004.[2]

Judicial career

Second Circuit

Hall was nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit by President George W. Bush on December 9, 2003, to a seat vacated by Fred Parker as Parker died in judicial service. Hall was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 24, 2004 on a majority vote and received commission on July 7, 2004.[3]

Notable cases

NY City smoking deterrent posters (2012)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (94th St. Grocery v. N.Y.C. Bd. of Health, 11-91-cv)

On July 10, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the decision of Manhattan federal Judge Jed Rakoff, ruling that federal regulations preempted a city ordinance that required cigarette distributors to post gruesome photos of cigarette related illnesses at the point of sale. The court held that the 1965 Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act preempted the local law, thus rendering the local ordinance unconstitutional. Philip Morris USA alongside 2 other manufacturers, 2 major retailers and 2 trade unions challenged this city law in federal court last year. Despite admitting the risks of smoking, Rakoff agreed with the cigarette producers, stating in his opinion, "Even merchants of morbidity are entitled to the full protection of the law." The Second Circuit concurred, though they believed that the city could launch its own anti-smoking campaign using the images, but could not require retailers to do it. The case was heard by Judges Peter Hall, Gerard Lynch, and Denny Chin, with Chin writing the opinion of the court.[4][5]

Fed Reserve disclosure (2009)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (BLOOMBERG, LP v. BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF FED. RESERVE, 601 F. 3d 143)

Bloomberg News talking about their suit against the Fed.

On August 24, 2009, District Judge Loretta Preska ruled that the Federal Reserve must disclose the recipients of emergency loans and aid during the economic downturn.[6]

Bloomberg News took court action after the nation's central bank refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Act request. According to the network, Bloomberg News hoped that if they made public the recipients of bailout money it would deter more bailout money from being handed out.[6]

As part of her order, Preska gave the Federal Reserve five days to hand over the documents. On August 28, 2009, Judge Preska delayed her order requiring the Federal Reserve to disclose bailout recipients. Preska also allowed the Fed to file an appeal with the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.[7]

The case was subsequently argued in front of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals on January 11, 2010, and decided on March 19, 2010. The appellate court judges, Dennis Jacobs, Pierre Leval, and Peter Hall, upheld the decision reached by Judge Preska.[8]

Seinfeld case (2009)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (LAPINE v. Seinfeld, No. 09-4423-cv)

District Judge Laura Swain tossed out a copyright infringement lawsuit against Jessica Seinfeld on September 10, 2009, after the judge found that a recipe in a cook book did not infringe on a competing author.[9]

Missy Chase Lapine sued the wife of comedian Jerry Seinfeld claiming a chicken breast recipe infringed on her similar recipe and competed unfairly. The judge found that because the styles of the books differed there was no evidence that Seinfeld's wife committed plagiarism.[9] The judgement can be read here.

The case was appealed to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. The two appeals court judges, Reena Raggi and Peter Hall, ruled against Missy Chase Lapine and affirmed the decision by Judge Swain.[10]

In 2010, Missy Chase Lapine sued Jerry Seinfeld for slander as a result of an interview Mr. Seinfeld participated in on the David Letterman television show. The New York Supreme Court dismissed the claim as being without merit in 2011. The judgment can be read here.[11]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Fred Parker
Second Circuit
Seat #5
Succeeded by: