1986: Elected to Parliament for the Socialist Party in the Val-d'Oise district north of Paris. Goes on to become mayor of Sarcelles, a working-class immigrant suburb.
1997: Serves as Finance and Economy Minister under a new Socialist government through 1999. Manages launch of the euro and represents France on the board of governors for financial institutions, including the International Monetary Fund.
2000: Teaches economics at Paris' prestigious political science institute, Sciences Po, and is named visiting professor at California's Stanford University.
2006: Runs for the Socialist Party's nomination for the French presidential election; finishes second in primary.
2007: French novelist and journalist Tristane Banon claims Strauss-Kahn tried to force sexual relations with her during a 2003 interview with him.
2007: Assumes office as the 10th managing director of the IMF.
2008: Apologizes to IMF staff after accusations of a sexual relationship with a subordinate but says he did not abuse his position. IMF board finds the relationship was consensual.
May 2011: Is accused by Times Square hotel maid Nafissatou Diallo of sexually assaulting her. He is arrested at New York's Kennedy Airport after boarding a flight to Paris. He is held in custody for five days, during which he resigns from the IMF, until posting a $1 million cash bail and $5 million bond. Moves to more permanent location in lower Manhattan for house arrest that lasts until July 1.
June 2011: Insists he is innocent of attempted rape. Prosecutors question the accuser's credibility and seek to reduce Strauss-Kahn's bail.
August 2011: New York court dismisses attempted-rape and other charges against Strauss-Kahn. Prosecutors said they couldn't pursue the case because of doubts about the accuser's credibility and a lack of other evidence to prove a forced sexual encounter.
September 2011: He admits to moral failings.
October 2011: Paris prosecutor drops probe of novelist Banon's claim against him, citing an end to the statute of limitations.
December 2011: Reaches settlement with Diallo over her sexual assault allegations against him. Terms not formally disclosed.
March 2012: Prosecutors file preliminary charges against Strauss-Kahn and others for pimping in an investigation into a hotel prostitution ring in the northern French city of Lille. His lawyer says Strauss-Kahn denies any wrongdoing, but had "a certain number of parties with women, libertine parties with friends and women who were friends of friends."
October 2012: Strauss-Kahn's wife — famous French journalist Anne Sinclair — says they've split in a newspaper interview. Speaking publicly on their relationship in TV interview two years later, she acknowledged being in denial about his sexual behaviour.
June 2013: Citing a lack of evidence, prosecutors say they're seeking to drop all charges against Strauss-Kahn in the Lille case. Nevertheless, the next month, investigating judges in the case decide to go ahead with pimping charges against him and 13 others, paving the way for the trial that began in February.
June 12, 2015: Strauss-Kahn is cleared of any wrongdoing in the Lille case trial.