Between 2000 and 2009, a dissent at the Court of Appeal was a moderately strong indication that a reversal was more likely at the Supreme Court in civil cases.  For the ten year period, 68.33% of cases with a dissent below were reversed at the Supreme Court, while 56.1% of cases decided unanimously at the Court of Appeal were reversed.  In seven of the ten years, the reversal rate for divided decisions was higher than the reversal rate of unanimous decisions.  The margin was particularly high in 2000 (77.78% for divided decisions, 50% for unanimous ones); 2001 (83.33% to 50%); 2003 (100% to 69.05%); and 2004 (71.43% to 50%).  Divided decisions led more narrowly in 2005, 2007 and 2008.

Join us back here next time as we review the data for criminal cases during the same ten years.

Image courtesy of Flickr by FancyLady (no changes).