Judicial Council Releases Annual Court Statistics Report


Contact: Lynn Holton, Public Information Officer, 415-865-7740

Dec 21, 2011

Judicial Council Releases Annual Court Statistics Report

Trial Court Caseload Remains Over 10 Million Filings

San Francisco— Statewide filings in the California superior courts remained over 10 million for the second consecutive year, resulting in a slight decrease from last year but still a 20 percent increase over the past decade, according to the Judicial Council's 2011 Court Statistics Report (CSR).

The CSR provides detailed statewide caseload data for fiscal year 2009–2010 and 10-year trend data on a wide range of court business in the Supreme Court of California, the Courts of Appeal, and the superior courts in the state's 58 counties. Comprehensive county-level data for the most recent fiscal year are published in the online version of the report, along with a summary of the major filings trends, on the California Courts Web site.

Article VI, section 6 of the California Constitution requires the Judicial Council to survey the condition of business in the state courts and to report and make recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature.

A snapshot of the court caseload data in the CSR follows.

Supreme Court*

  • The Supreme Court issued 96 written opinions in fiscal year 2009–2010.
  • Filings totaled 9,562, and dispositions totaled 9,439.
  • Automatic appeals arising out of judgments of death totaled 29 cases, and the court disposed of 26 such appeals by written opinion.
  • The Supreme Court ordered 4 Court of Appeal opinions depublished in this fiscal year.

Courts of Appeal

  • Total contested matters for the Courts of Appeal totaled 22,515 made up of 13,738 records of appeal and 8,777 original proceedings.
  • Dispositions in the Courts of Appeal totaled 24,442. Of these dispositions, 15,524 were appeals, and 8,918 were original proceedings.
  • Dispositions of appeals by written opinion totaled 10,270, appeals disposed of without written opinion totaled 3,453, and appeals disposed of without a record filed totaled 1,801. Dispositions of original proceedings by written opinion totaled 609, and original proceedings disposed of without written opinion totaled 8,309.
  • Statewide, 9 percent of Court of Appeal majority opinions were published.

Superior Courts
Superior court case filings across all case categories totaled 10,074,941, and dispositions totaled 8,782,281. Within these aggregate numbers, the following totals were recorded:

  • Civil filings totaled 1,152,926 and civil dispositions numbered 1,113,606.
  • Criminal filings totaled 8,270,215 and criminal dispositions numbered 7,116,013.
  • Juvenile filings totaled 127,387 and juvenile dispositions numbered 109,970.
  • Family law filings totaled 452,671 and family law dispositions numbered 383,547.
  • Filings and Dispositions for all other case types—probate, mental health, appeals, criminal habeas corpus— numbered 71,742 and 59,145, respectively.
  • A total of 11,047 jury trials and 470,529 court trials were recorded across all case types.

* Since 1996, the California Supreme Court has issued workload statistics using a reporting period of September 1 through August 31 of the following year. This time frame best corresponds to the filing of the Supreme Court's opinions. To view the court's September 1, 2010–August 31, 2011 annual statistics, please see http://www.courts.ca.gov/15366.htm.