In the waning months of the Trump Administration, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a complaint against Yale University. The allegations in the complaint closely tracked those made against Harvard College by a private advocacy group, Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA). That is, DOJ maintained that Yale discriminated against Asian American and white applicants in its undergraduate admissions program, engaging in unconstitutional racial balancing. Yale denied the allegations in various press releases, but there was little if any activity in the lawsuit itself. To no one’s surprise, the Biden administration dropped the lawsuit on February 3, 2021, though it did state that it would continue an “underlying investigation” into Yale’s admissions policies, with Yale pledging to cooperate in that matter.
SFFA had sought to intervene in DOJ’s initial lawsuit, but was denied permission to do so. It then filed its own complaint against Yale on February 25, 2021. It repeated the allegations made in the initial lawsuit by DOJ, in effect both contesting the continuing viability of Grutter v. Bollinger (2003) and, if Grutter remains good law, the methods used by Yale to screen and admit its entering classes.
The case is currently pending before District Judge Kary A. Dooley in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut. It will almost certainly require protracted discovery and then a lengthy bench trial. It is accordingly unlikely that there will be any developments of any significance for many months.