This week, we’re beginning an intensive look at the Court’s cases, divided by subject matter.  Many people – especially non-lawyers – think of courts of last resort primarily in terms of constitutional law decisions.  So let’s start there – the Illinois Supreme Court’s past twenty-seven years with constitutional law in both civil and criminal law.

In 1990, the Court decided thirteen cases whose primary issue was constitutional law.  The Court decided only two con law cases in 1991, but eleven in 1992.  In the four years that followed, the Court’s con law case load moved up and down: three cases in 1993, eight in 1994, five in 1995 and fourteen cases in 1996.

The Court’s civil con law caseload remained at the same level for the seven years that followed.  In 1997, the Court decided nine civil con law cases.  The Court decided thirteen cases, in 1998 and six in 1999, but only one in 2000.  The Court decided six constitutional law cases on the civil side in 2001, four in 2002 and five in 2003.

The Court decided seven civil cases primarily involving constitutional law in both 2004 and 2005.  In 2006, the Court decided five con law cases.  In 2007, the Court decided only two civil con law cases.  The Court decided eight con law cases in 2008, two in 2009 and five in 2010.

Constitutional law cases have been slightly lower on the civil side in the past seven years.  The Court decided two civil constitutional law cases per year in 2011 and 2012.  The Court decided three cases in 2013, four in 2014, five in 2015, six in 2016 and three in 2017.

Join us tomorrow as we begin our review of the Court’s constitutional law decisions over the past quarter-century on the criminal law side of the docket.

Image courtesy of Flickr by Tony Webster (no changes).