Last week, we began our analysis of the civil and criminal dockets at the California Supreme Court with the years 2000 through 2005. Today, we take a look at the civil cases the Court decided between 2006 and 2010.
Final judgments declined somewhat as a percentage of the civil caseload in 2006 at 50.94% of the docket (27 cases). The next biggest share was petitions for writs of administrative mandate at 15.09% of the docket, followed by writ petitions directed at the lower courts (11.32%) and appeals relating to anti-SLAPP motions (7.55%). The remainder of the docket was scattered, with two appeals from post-judgment orders, two appeals under C.C.P. § 904.1(a)(10), which governs Probate and Family Code appeals, and one case each from four additional areas.
In 2007, final judgments rose back to nearly the level they were between 2000 and 2005 at 58.18% of the civil docket. Once again, petitions for writ of administrative mandate outpaced traditional writ petitions on the docket at 14.55% and 10.91%, respectively. The Court heard two cases each arising from certified questions, arbitration matters and workers’ compensation, and one each arising from injunctive orders, anti-SLAPP motions, and a Probate/Family Code appeal.
Final judgments increased again in 2008, comprising 65% of the civil docket. Both petitions for writ of administrative mandate and traditional mandate were down from their usual levels at 10% and 5%, respectively. The Court heard three arbitration cases in 2008 (7.5% of the docket), two appeals from post judgment orders under C.C.P. § 904.1(a)(2), and two more from new trial orders.
The docket was a bit more widely dispersed in 2009, with the Court deciding 23 appeals from final judgments, or 53.49% of the civil docket. For the first time in the period, traditional petitions for writ of mandate exceeded administrative petitions on the docket, 16.28% to 13.95%. Certified questions took an upswing on the docket in 2009 and 2010, amounting to 6.98% of the docket in 2009. The rest of the docket consisted of one case each arising from arbitration orders, anti-SLAPP motions, Probate/Family Code orders, and petitions for original writs.
In absolute terms, the Court heard fewer appeals from final judgments in 2010 than in any year of the period, comprising 52.48% of the civil docket. For the first time, certified questions were the second most common element on the civil docket, with the Court deciding five such cases, or 11.9% of the docket. The Court decided four traditional writ petitions and three petitions for writ of administrative mandate (9.52% and 7.14%, respectively). The Court heard two cases each arising from arbitration matters, post-judgment orders and injunctive matters, one anti-SLAPP motion and one petition for an original writ.
Join us back here tomorrow as we turn our attention to the criminal docket between 2006 and 2010.