Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 2015-2016

These tables are derived from information contained in 40 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions filed between September 1, 2015, and the end of the court’s term in July, 2016.[1]  The total of 40 decisions does not include the following items contained in the Supreme Court’s listing of opinions and dispositional orders for this period: (1) decisions arising from disciplinary proceedings against lawyers; and (2) orders pertaining to various motions and petitions.

Sometimes the Court’s listing of opinions and dispositional orders contains separate entries for individual cases that were consolidated and resolved by a single decision.  If two or more cases were consolidated in this manner, the decision is counted only once for the purposes of the following tables.

In addition to the 40 decisions noted above, two deadlocked (3-3) per curiam decisions were filed: New Richmond News v. City of New Richmond; and Yasmine Clark v. American Cyanamid Company.  These are included only in the “Number of Oral Arguments Presented” table.

The justices’ work this term also included an unusual decision in State v. Patrick J. Lynch, where no more than three justices could agree to affirm, reverse, or modify the decision of the court of appeals—which thus remained in force.  This case will be included only in the “Days Between Oral Argument and Opinion Filing” table and the “Number of Oral Arguments Presented” table.

The tables are available as a complete set and by individual topic according to the subsets listed below.

Four-to-Three Decisions
Decisions Arranged by Vote Split
Frequency of Justices in the Majority
Distribution of Opinion Authorship
Frequency of Agreement Between Pairs of Justices
Average Time Between Oral Argument and Opinions Authored by Each Justice
Number of Oral Arguments Presented by Individual Firms and Agencies


[1] According to the Clerk’s office, no additional substantive decisions will be filed after July 13.  The decisions may be found on the Wisconsin Court System website.

About Alan Ball

Alan Ball is a Professor of History at Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI.


SCOWstats offers numerical analysis of the voting by Wisconsin Supreme Court justices on diverse issues over the past 95 years.

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