The U.S. Supreme Court has set January 21, 2015 as the date for oral argument in
Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., which is the case presenting the issue whether disparate impact claims are cognizable under the Fair Housing Act. The petitioners’ merits brief was filed on November 17th.
Given that the Supreme Court granted the certiorari petition on October 2nd, the January oral argument date seems particularly expeditious. The scheduling of an expeditious oral argument likely reflects a desire to resolve the issue presented. The two prior cases presenting this issue, Township of Mount Holly v. Mt. Holly Gardens Citizens in Action, Inc. and Magner v. Gallagher, were both settled after the completion of merits briefing but before the Supreme Court could hear oral argument and resolve the question of whether disparate impact claims are cognizable under the FHA.