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Ripple Lawsuit: When Will it End

The SEC vs. Ripple lawsuit is approaching its conclusion as Judge Analisa Torres, presiding over the District Court for the Southern District of New York, has mandated that both the SEC and Ripple submit their summary judgment briefs by November 15, 2022. This significant ruling indicates the potential resolution of the Ripple lawsuit before the beginning of 2023.

What is Summary Judgment?

Summary judgment occurs when the judge examines all the presented statements and evidence in the court and subsequently renders a decision. If no oppositions or motions are filed by either party leading up to the judge’s decision date, the XRP lawsuit may conclude in Q4 2022 or early 2023. However, if either party files motions, appeals, or the judge deems it necessary for oral arguments, the final judgment may face further delays.

The aforementioned dates are merely well-informed estimates based on the latest information from the court. Ultimately, the conclusion of the SEC vs. Ripple case lies in the hands of the judge, contingent on the time required to review the 75-page summary judgment briefs submitted by each party.

Hinman Speech

In addition to setting a summary judgment brief deadline for both parties, there has been a notable development in the SEC vs. Ripple lawsuit. The SEC has filed a motion seeking to protect the Hinman emails from disclosure, citing attorney-client privilege. The basis of their argument is that the communications related to William Hinman’s speech, where he stated that ETH, BTC, and a few other digital assets were not securities, were exchanges involving the division’s attorneys, constituting legal guidance provided to the division itself.

However, the likelihood of the court granting this motion appears low. Previously, U.S. Magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn denied the SEC’s motion to exempt Hinman’s emails from production, asserting that the emails were not protected by deliberative process privilege. The court’s stance has been that Hinman’s speech represented his personal opinion rather than an official agency position.

The SEC appears to be heavily invested in trying to exclude the Hinman speech and its associated communications from evidence. This has led to speculation that the SEC is making a substantial effort to omit this evidence because it might contain language or analysis explicitly stating that Ripple is not a security. If this were true, such evidence could severely undermine the SEC’s main arguments that XRP is a security and that Ripple, Brad Garlinghouse, and Chris Larsen engaged in an unregistered securities sale during XRP’s launch. The potential disclosure of this information could prove highly detrimental to the SEC’s case.

Ripple Lawsuit: When will it end?

Nearly two years have passed since the Securities Exchange Commission filed a lawsuit against Ripple Labs, Garlinghouse, and Larsen. However, the long-awaited conclusion seems within reach. As the court continues to reveal new developments and the submission deadline for the summary judgment brief (November 15, 2022) approaches, we will gain better insights into the potential decision date by the judge.

If no significant motions or appeals are submitted before the summary judgment brief deadline, there is a strong likelihood that the SEC vs. Ripple case will reach its resolution between November 2022 and Q1 2023.