Jenner & Block

Client Alert: Not Just About Tax Returns: The Supreme Court Clarifies Congressional Subpoena Power—and Its Limitations

When a company finds itself in receipt of a congressional subpoena, it may wonder whether Congress had authority to issue that subpoena. Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court shed light on that question in its decision in Trump v. Mazars USA, LLP, Nos. 19-715 & 19-760. While the decision focused on Congress’s power to subpoena the President’s personal documents, the decision gives some insight into the Court’s thoughts regarding the Legislative Branch’s subpoena power more generally.

Specifically, the Court confirmed that Congress’s power to subpoena is far from limitless, and defenses to congressional subpoenas may exist in some situations. This decision may therefore open up new avenues to object for those who become the subject of a congressional investigation and wish to push back on congressional demands for information.

To read the full alert, please click here.