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  • November 2014: SFFA filed a federal lawsuit against the University of North Carolina, UNC-Chapel Hill and university officials. Limited discovery takes place until the similar Fisher v. the University of Texas at Austin case was decided.
  • June 2016: U.S. Supreme Court ruled that UT-Austin’s admissions practices were constitutional.
  • 2017 – 2018: The full discovery phase commenced in UNC-Chapel Hill’s case.
  • January 2019: Summary judgment motions filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina in Winston-Salem. Each party submits legal briefs arguing why it should win the case without a trial.
  • September 2019: The trial court denies summary judgment.
  • November 9, 2020: Bench (no jury) trial begins with counsel and most witnesses appearing in person. Trial concludes after eight days of testimony.
  • October 18, 2021: The trial court rules in the University’s favor.
  • November 6, 2021: SFFA files notice of appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
  • November 11, 2021: SFFA files petition for certiorari asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear arguments on an expedited basis before the Fourth Circuit considers the UNC-Chapel Hill case. SFFA previously sought certiorari in the Harvard case in 2021.
  • December 15, 2021: Fourth Circuit denies SFFA’s request to stay the appeal until the U.S. Supreme Court acts on the petition for review of the UNC-Chapel Hill case.
  • December 20, 2021: UNC-Chapel Hill files response to SFFA’s petition with U.S. Supreme Court.
  • January 24, 2022U.S. Supreme Court grants SFFA’s UNC and Harvard petitions for certiorari, consolidating the two cases. The court likely will hear the case during the 2022-2023 term, and its decision potentially could come in mid-2023.