Last week, we reviewed the yearly docket of domestic relations cases on the civil side and juvenile justice decisions on the criminal side. This week, we’re taking a deeper look at those two areas of law, looking both at the kinds of cases the Court has taken, what impact the winners below has on the reversal rate, and what the Court’s overall reversal rate is.
For domestic relations, 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. Since 1990, the Court has decided thirty-one conservative Appellate Court decisions, reversing in 67.74%. The Court has decided forty-five liberal Appellate Court decisions in domestic relations, meaning that 59.21% of the Court’s entire domestic relations docket arises from liberal decisions below. The Court has reversed 55.56% of the liberal decisions it has reviewed.
In Table 796, we review the yearly totals for conservative decisions affirmed by the Court. The Court affirmed two such decisions in 1990, one in 1993, 1996 and 2002, two in 2004 and one in 2010, 2011 and 2013.
The Court reversed one conservative decision in 1990 and one in 1991. The Court reversed twice in 1992 and once in 1996, 1998 and 2000. The Court reversed three such decisions in 2003, one in 2004, two in 2007, three in 2008, two in 2011, one in 2012 and 2013 and one in 2017.
The Court affirmed one liberal decision per year in 1990, 1991, 1994, 1996, 1998 and 2000, two in 2001, one in 2004, two in 2005 and 2006, one in 2009 and 2010, two in 2013 and three in 2015.
The Court reversed two liberal decisions in 1990, one in 1992, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 2000 and 2002, two in 2003 and 2004, one in 2005 and 2006, two in 2007, one in 2009, three in 2012, two in 2014 and one in 2015 and 2016.
Between 1990 and 2017, the Court reversed in 60.26% of its domestic relations cases – a rate several points above its overall reversal rate. The Court reversed 56.25% of the time from 1990 to 1995. The Court reversed 60% of its domestic relations cases from 1996 to 2000. The Court reversed 55.56% of the time from 2001 to 2005. The Court reversed 71.43% of the domestic relations cases it heard from 2006 to 2010. Between 2011 and 2017, the Court reversed in 60% of its domestic relations cases.
Join us back here tomorrow as we further address the Court’s juvenile justice cases.