This paper reviews the Supreme Court's decision in Northern Pipeline, emphasizing the analysis of Justice Brennan's plurality opinion, and then applies this analysis to the Federal Magistrates Act. In particular, attention will be given to decisions of the U.S. Courts of Appeals, holding delegation to Federal Magistrates constitutional. The paper then distinguishes administrative agency adjudication from adjudication under the Federal Magistrates Act. Finally, the Northern Pipeline analysis is applied to administrative adjudication and compulsory arbitration. Arbitration provisions under the Railway Labor Act, the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, Rodenticide Act, and the Employee Retirement Income Security Act will be discussed. The paper concludes that under the Northern Pipeline analysis, certain administrative agency adjudication and several compulsory arbitration provisions unconstitutionally vest article III jurisdiction in non-article III judicial officers.
Gerard J. Rehel Jr,
Legislative and Administrative Courts: Northern Pipeline and Related Developments in Federal Constitutional Law,
5 J. Nat’l Ass’n Admin. L. Judges.
available at http://digitalcommons.pepperdine.edu/naalj/vol5/iss1/2