United States v. Vaello Madero

596 U.S. 159 (2022)

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United States v. Vaello Madero

United States Supreme Court
596 U.S. 159 (2022)

RW

Facts

Residents of the United States territory of Puerto Rico paid federal Social Security, Medicare, and federal unemployment taxes but were otherwise exempt from federal taxation. Puerto Ricans were eligible for Social Security, Medicare, and unemployment-compensation benefits but were ineligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and many other federal benefits. The federal government (plaintiff) mistakenly continued paying SSI to Jose Luis Vaello Madero (defendant) after Vaello Madero moved from New York to Puerto Rico. When the government discovered its mistake, it sued Vaello Madero for restitution. Vaello Madero argued that equal-protection components of Fifth Amendment due process entitled Vaello Madero to receive SSI. A federal district court’s judgment for Vaello Madero was affirmed on appeal to the First Circuit. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari to review the appellate court’s decision.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Kavanaugh, J.)

Concurrence (Gorsuch, J.)

Concurrence (Thomas, J.)

Dissent (Sotomayor, J.)

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