The US Supreme Court will use its Sept. 30 private conference to consider whether to hear Argentina’s appeal in a clash affecting billions of dollars in defaulted debt. The schedule, revealed on Wednesday on the court’s public docket, means the justices may say as early as Oct. 1 whether they will review a 2012 federal appeals court ruling that requires Argentina to pay holders of defaulted bonds if the country makes payments on restructured debt.
The listing on the case docket is a clerical step and doesn’t indicate anything about the likelihood that the court will grant review.
The Sept. 30 conference is designed to give the nine justices a head start on their new term, which formally opens Oct. 7. The justices typically issue a list of new cases they will hear the day after their late September conference. They will release a list of cases they decline to consider, along with other orders, on Oct. 7.
The court doesn’t have to act on the Argentina appeal immediately and could defer a decision. The court could also seek input from the Obama administration.
The appeal is potentially one of two chances the high court will have to hear Argentina’s arguments, which centre on a U.S. sovereign-immunity law.
Argentina also is asking the New York-based appeals court to reconsider a separate ruling, issued in August in two forms: one to the three-judges that supported the lower court ruling and secondly ‘en banc’ which means the fourteen members of the Appeals court. Should the appeals court refuse, Argentina could then file a second request with the Supreme Court.
Argentina’s opponents in the legal fight include NML Capital Ltd., a unit of billionaire hedge-fund manager Paul Singer’s Elliott Management Corp.
The Supreme Court case is Argentina v. NML Capital, 12-1494. The appeals court case is NML Capital Ltd. v. Republic of Argentina, 12-00105, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (New York).-