Key dates set for SEC vs Coinbase lawsuit, initial arguments in August
Unveiling the crucial stages of Coinbase's legal battle with the SEC
In the ongoing legal case between the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and cryptocurrency giant Coinbase, a significant milestone has been reached by setting a legal pleadings schedule.
This development was publicized on Twitter by Coinbase’s Chief Legal Officer, Paul Grewal, who commended the court for its “prompt attention” to the matter.
Coinbase vs. SEC Schedule
Documents filed on Jul. 20 disclose a systematic plan for the upcoming legal arguments in the case. Both ‘Coinbase,’ the defendants, and the SEC, the plaintiff, submitted a joint proposal to the court outlining a series of deadlines, primarily for Coinbase’s anticipated motion for judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12c. Katherine Failla, the presiding judge on the case, responded on July 20, stating that the application was “granted in part.”
|Event||Proposed Due Date||Court Approved Due Date||Description|
|Coinbase’s motion and opening brief||Aug. 4, 2023||Aug. 4, 2023||Coinbase will present its initial arguments and defenses against the SEC’s claims.|
|Amicus briefs in support of Coinbase’s motion||7 days after Coinbase’s brief (Aug. 11, 2023)||Aug. 11, 2023||Independent parties providing additional information or arguments supporting Coinbase’s position are due to submit their briefs.|
|SEC’s opposition brief||30 days after Coinbase’s brief (Sept. 3, 2023)||Oct. 3, 2023||The court-approved date for the SEC to present its counterarguments to Coinbase’s initial brief.|
|Amicus briefs in support of SEC’s opposition||7 days after SEC’s opposition brief||Oct. 10, 2023||Independent parties providing additional information or arguments supporting the SEC’s position are due to submit their briefs.|
|Coinbase’s reply brief||21 days after SEC’s opposition brief (Oct. 24, 2023)||Oct. 24, 2023||Coinbase will respond to the SEC’s opposition brief, presenting counterarguments to the SEC’s positions.|
By the submitted joint proposal, Coinbase’s motion and opening brief are due by Aug. 4, 2023. Following this, amicus briefs supporting Coinbase’s motion are to be submitted within a week, with amicus briefs supporting the SEC’s opposition due a week after the SEC’s opposition brief. Coinbase’s reply brief is due 21 days after that.
A consensus has not been reached on the SEC’s opposition brief deadline. Coinbase has proposed a deadline of 30 days after their initial motion and opening brief, while the SEC has proposed a 60-day timeframe. At this juncture, Judge Failla set a date for the SEC’s opposition brief on Oct. 3, 2023, aligning with the SEC’s preference.
The joint letter stated,
“The parties have not been able to reach an agreement with respect to the deadline for the SEC’s opposition brief.”
The SEC has also indicated that it will not file a motion to strike any of Coinbase’s affirmative defenses under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(f), according to Grewal.
Judge Failla Response
The court order outlined specific page limits for the various submissions: 30 pages for Coinbase’s opening brief and the SEC’s opposition brief, 15 pages for Coinbase’s reply brief, and 20 pages each for any amicus briefs.
The court order also said it is standard for the court to pause the discovery process while waiting for a decision on a motion that could completely resolve or dispose of the case.
For this reason, the court declined to approve the case management plan submitted by the parties at this time.
Grewal, in a subsequent tweet, delved into the significance of the legal timeline according to U.S. Code, stating,
“Although 28 USC 1292(b) is silent, 10 days always made sense to me as the right deadline to seek DCT certification of an order for interlocutory appeal. After all, that’s the deadline to petition the appellate court. 10 court days from Judge Torres’ ruling is tomorrow.”