Court to hear oral arguments in Grayscale’s lawsuit against the SEC in March


A US appeals court is set to hear oral arguments in Grayscale Investment’s lawsuit against the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over its decision to deny Grayscale’s Bitcoin (BTC) spot exchange-traded fund (ETF).

According to court archived on January 23, both sides will present their arguments at the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia on March 7, at 9:30 am local time.

Oral arguments are spoken presentations made by lawyers summarizing why their clients should win the case. Each party in the case takes turns speaking directly and answering questions from the judge and is given equal amounts of time to do so.

In a tweet on Jan. 24, Grayscale Chief Legal Officer Craig Salm said the newly filed motion was “welcome news,” as they had previously anticipated oral arguments would be scheduled “as soon as Q2.”

The composition of the argument panel in the Grayscale case will be revealed on February 6, 30 days before the date of the oral argument, while the amount of time for the argument will be set in a separate order, according to the motion.

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Grayscale updates its timeline of appeals with the date for the motion for Oral Arguments Source: gray scale

Grayscale initiated its lawsuit against the SEC in June after the regulator rejected its request to convert its $12 billion Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) into a spot-based ETF.

Earlier this month, Grayscale filed a response with the DC Court of Appeals, claiming that the SEC acted arbitrarily by treating spot-traded ETFs differently from futures-traded products and that the SEC exceeded its authority when it denied Grayscale’s request for Bitcoin ETFs.

Related: SEC’s ‘one-dimensional’ approach is slowing Bitcoin progress: Grayscale CEO

Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein reiterated a similar point during an interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box on January 24, stating:

“It’s important to remember the role that regulators like the SEC play when it comes to investors. They’re not here to tell investors what to invest in or what not to invest in. They’re here to make sure all the proper disclosures are made. […] so [investors] are aware of all the risks associated.”

Sonnenshein said they “definitely expect” a decision from the courts on its case against the SEC in “Q2 or Q3 of this year.”

“The frustrating thing for investors and certainly the Grayscale team is that we are actually a business that was born in the US, used existing US regulatory frameworks to bring crypto to investors in a safe and compliant way.”

“Meeting with both houses yesterday and today, what we really hear […] is that the SEC has already approved this spot Bitcoin ETF […] a lot of the recent investor damage we’ve seen in crypto would have been prevented,” he added.