Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1985-1986

These tables are derived from information contained in 71 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions that were turned up in a Lexis search for decisions filed between September 1, 1985, and August 31, 1986.  The total of 71 decisions does not include rulings arising from (1) disciplinary proceedings against lawyers, (2) various motions and petitions, and (3) a 3-3 per curiam decision (Local 257 of Hotel & Restaurant Employees & Bartenders International Union v. Wilson Street East Dinner Playhouse, Inc.).

It was difficult to decide whether to include the following “cases”: (1) In re Amendment of Rules of Civil & Criminal Procedure: Sections 971.07 & 971.08, Stats., (2) In re Creation of SCR Chptr. 13, and (3) In re Amendment of State Bar Rules.  They did not involve oral argument, and no lawyers are listed on the introductory pages.  I decided to include In re Amendment of Rules of Civil & Criminal Procedure, which yielded a per curiam decision with dissents by Justices Bablitch and Abrahamson (though the case will not figure in tables pertaining to oral arguments and majority-opinion authorship).  I have not included the other two “cases,” because they were resolved with “orders,” which bore less of a resemblance to the format of a normal decision.

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


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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