Law Firm Fantasy League

The Writs emerged as the big winners from this week’s round of competition—thanks primarily to 15 points from Hurley Burish (for a brief and oral argument in State v. Jordan Alexander Lickes and a brief, oral argument, and favorable outcome in State v. Alan M. Johnson).  Legal Action of Wisconsin chipped in a point as well with an amicus brief in State v. Lickes.

Next came the Gavels of the State Public Defender’s Office with five points for a brief and oral argument in State v. Anthony M. Schmidt, followed by the Waivers and the Citations who each picked up a point for amicus briefs—from Henak Law Office (in State v. Jacob Richard Beyer) and the Frank J. Remington Center (in State v. Adam W. Vice) respectively.

Click here for the complete, updated standings.

Law Firm Fantasy League

All five teams gained points from this week’s torrent of decisions, with the Writs and the Waivers leading the way.  The Writs collected ten points from the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty for a brief, oral argument, and favorable outcome in Sara Lindsey James v. Janel Heinrich (consolidated with WCRIS v. Janel Heinrich and St. Ambrose Academy, Inc. v. Joseph T. Parisi) and one point from Pines Bach for an amicus brief in the same case. 

The Waivers matched this total with five points from von Briesen & Roper (for a brief and oral argument in Southport Commons, LLC v. DOT), five points from Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren (for a brief and oral argument in Southwest Airlines Co. v. State of Wisconsin Department of Revenue), and one point from Boardman & Clark (for an amicus brief in Sara Lindsey James v. Janel Heinrich).

Hot on their heels came the Affirmed with 10 points from Borgelt, Powell, Peterson & Frauen for a brief, oral argument, and favorable outcome in Kemper Independence Insurance Company v. Ismet Islami.  Following some distance back were the Gavels of the State Public Defender’s Office (five points for a brief and oral argument in Eau Claire County Department of Human Services v. S. E.) and the Citations (one point each from Godfrey & Kahn and Cannon & Dunphy for a pair of amicus briefs in Kemper Independence Insurance Company v. Ismet Islami).

Click here for the complete, updated standings.

Law Firm Fantasy League

All three decisions filed this week delivered points to league members, with the Gavels of the State Public Defender’s Office emerging as the big winners.  They collected 15 points—10 for a brief, oral argument, and favorable outcome in State v. Heather Jan VanBeek, and five for a brief and oral argument in State v. James Timothy Genous.

The Waivers were also busy, picking up five points from Quarles & Brady for a brief and oral argument in Ronald L. Collison v. City of Milwaukee Board of Review, which moved them ahead of the idle Citations into third place.

Click here for the complete, updated standings.

A New Minister of Dissents?

For decades, Justice Shirley Abrahamson’s dissenting opinions figured prominently in commentary on the Wisconsin Supreme Court, and, more recently, references to her frequent dissents have dotted assessments of her judicial career.  Not only were her dissents often “tart”—as her obituary in the New York Times put it—she wrote far more of them than any of her colleagues over a career that spanned 43 years.                  [Continue Reading…]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1958-59

These tables are derived from information contained in 251 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions that were turned up in a Nexis Uni search for decisions filed between September 1, 1958, and August 31, 1959.  The total of 251 decisions does not include various orders pertaining to petitions, motions, applications, and the like (generally disposed of without oral argument and in short per curiam decisions).

Also excluded are In re Integration of Bar, which yielded a per curiam order pertaining to the functioning of the State Bar, and two deadlocked per curiam decisions: McFarlane v. Industrial Commission and Marquard v. Condenser Service & Engineering Company.  In Helen v. Bodenhagen the court issued a decision (November 5, 1958) and later (April 10, 1959) modified it slightly in a per curiam decision.  Only the November 5 decision is counted in the following tables.

Eight justices appear in several of the following tables, because Justice Dieterich replaced Justice Wingert on January 5, 1959.

The tables are available as a complete set and by individual topic in 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

Law Firm Fantasy League

No decisions were filed this week–hence, no change in the standings.

How Many Decisions Can We Expect in 2020-21?

Around this time in recent years, SCOWstats has ventured an estimate of the number of decisions that the justices would file once a term had run its course at the end of July.  Looming over the preparation of this year’s estimate is the question of whether the justices would rebound from their near-historic low of 45 decisions filed in 2019-20—and the answer is clearly “yes.”  They will not, however, reach the level of 60, which the following graph indicates is their approximate ceiling over the past decade.[1][Continue Reading…]

Law Firm Fantasy League

This week’s decisions generated points for three teams—and shook up the standings in the process.  The Affirmed were the big winners, collecting 10 points from Kasdorf Lewis & Swietlik (for a brief, oral argument, and favorable outcome in Francis G. Graef v. Continental Indemnity Company) and five points from Conway, Olejniczak & Jerry (for a brief and oral argument in the same case).  On the strength of this showing, they shot far ahead of the Waivers into second place.  Not only did the idle Waivers watch the Affirmed fly past, they also found themselves one point behind the Citations, who added five points from Weiss Law Office for a brief and oral argument in David Stroede v. Society Insurance.  

Even the cellar-dwelling Writs moved into respectability with 10 points from Warshafsky, Rotter, Tarnoff & Bloch for a brief, oral argument, and favorable outcome in David Stroede v. Society Insurance.  When the dust settled at the end of the week, they were only three points back of the Waivers.

Click here for the complete, updated standings.

Law Firm Fantasy League

This week the Gavels of the State Public Defender’s Office picked up 10 points for a brief, oral argument, and favorable outcome in State v. Tavodess Matthews, enabling them to pad their lead early in the second half of the season.

Click here for the complete, updated standings.

Law Firm Fantasy League

Given that Fond du Lac County v. S.N.W. was dismissed as improvidently granted, none of the teams gained points from last week’s decisions—hence no change in the standings.