The Supreme Court of the United States granted review in four cases this morning:

Trevino v. Thaler, No. 11-10189: Whether petitioner was properly barred from further review of an ineffective assistance of counsel claim.

McQuiggin v. Perkins, No. 12-126: Whether there is an actual-innocence exception to the requirement that a petitioner show an extraordinary circumstance that “prevented timely filing” of a habeas petition, and, if so, whether there is an additional actual innocence exception to the requirement that a petitioner demonstrate that “he has been pursuing his rights diligently.”

PPL Corp. v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, No. 12-43: Whether, in determining the creditability of a foreign tax under section 901 of the Internal Revenue Code, courts should employ a formalistic approach that looks solely at the form of the foreign tax statute and ignores how the tax actually operates, or should employ a substance-based approach that considers factors such as the practical operation and intended effect of the foreign tax.

Bullock v. BankChampaign, No. 11-1518: What degree of misconduct by a trustee constitutes “defalcation” under § 523(a)(4) of the Bankruptcy Code that disqualifies the errant trustee’s resulting debt from a bankruptcy discharge – and does it include actions that result in no loss of trust property?