Last week, we reviewed the yearly numbers for the Court’s domestic relations cases on the civil side and juvenile justice decisions from the criminal docket. Today and tomorrow, we’re taking a closer look at those numbers.
In all, the Court has decided forty-two cases arising from domestic relations disputes. We code as “conservative” decisions cases where the party disputing such issues as property settlements, support and/or custody prevailed. “Liberal” decisions are cases where the party seeking settlements, support and/or custody won. The conservative position prevailed at the Court of Appeal in 54.76% of the cases the Supreme Court agreed to decide. Interestingly, the Court’s reversal rate is quite high regardless of who prevailed below – 69.57% reversal of conservative wins, 68.42% reversal of liberal wins.
In Table 536, we report the yearly totals for conservative wins from the Court of Appeal affirmed by the Supreme Court. The Court had one decision per year in 1991, 1994, 1996 and 2000, two in 2004 and one in 2015.
The Court reversed two conservative wins in domestic relations in 1993, two more in 1995, three in 1996, one in 1999, two in 2001, one in 2003, four in 2005 and one in 2006.
The Court affirmed one liberal win in 1991, two in 1993, and one each in 1995, 1998 and 2006.
The Court reversed three liberal wins from the Court of Appeal in 1992, one in 1993 and 19977, two in 1998, and one per year in 2000, 2003, 2004, 2010, 2013 and 2014.
For the entire period, the Court reversed, either in whole or in part, in 76.19% of its domestic relations cases. The Court entirely reversed 64.29% of the time. Between 1991 and 1995, the Court reversed 71.43% of its domestic relations cases. Between 1996 and 2000, the Court reversed 72.73% of the time. Between 2001 and 2005, the Court reversed in 81.82% of domestic relations cases. The Court’s reversal rate in domestic relations cases was 66.67% from 2006 to 2010. From 2011 to last year, the Court has reversed (entirely) 100% of its domestic relations cases.
Join us back here next time for an in-depth look at the Court’s juvenile justice cases.