Supreme Court of Canada: Year in Review 2018

Ten-Year Trends

trends

Breakdown of Cases Filed with the Court

Breakdown of Cases Filed with the Court
Description of image

This bar graph shows the types of cases filed with the Court each year. In 2009, there were 14 notices of appeal as of right and 542 applications for leave to appeal. In 2010, there were 24 notices of appeal as of right and 488 applications for leave to appeal. In 2011, there were 12 notices of appeal as of right and 554 applications for leave to appeal. In 2012, there were 15 notices of appeal as of right and 551 applications for leave to appeal. In 2013, there were 18 notices of appeal as of right and 490 applications for leave to appeal. In 2014, there were 16 notices of appeal as of right and 561 applications for leave to appeal. In 2015, there were 21 notices of appeal as of right and 542 applications for leave to appeal. In 2016, there were 15 notices of appeal as of right and 577 applications for leave to appeal. In 2017, there were 17 notices of appeal as of right and 526 applications for leave to appeal. In 2018, there were 26 notices of appeal as of right and 525 applications for leave to appeal.



Outcomes of Leave Applications Referred for Decision
Description of image

The first bar graph shows the outcomes of leave applications referred for decision each year. In 2009, 59 applications were granted and 444 applications were dismissed. In 2010, 55 applications were granted and 388 applications were dismissed. In 2011, 69 applications were granted and 449 applications were dismissed. In 2012, 69 applications were granted and 469 applications were dismissed. In 2013, 53 applications were granted and 456 applications were dismissed. In 2014, 50 applications were granted and 430 applications were dismissed. In 2015, 43 applications were granted and 424 applications were dismissed. In 2016, 50 applications were granted and 526 applications were dismissed. In 2017, 50 applications were granted and 426 applications were dismissed. In 2018, 39 applications were granted and 413 applications were dismissed.

The second bar graph shows the percentage of applications granted each year. The average was 10%. In 2009, 11% of applications were granted. In 2010, 12%. In 2011, 13%. In 2012, 12%. In 2013, 10%. In 2014, 10%. In 2015, 9%. In 2016, 8%. In 2017, 10%. In 2018, 8%.

Note: Statistics don’t include cases that were sent to a lower court, discontinued, quashed, adjourned, or where a request for time extension was not allowed.

Breakdown of Appeals Heard

Type of Case
Description of image

This bar graph shows the type of appeal heard each year, whether as of right or by leave. In 2009, 12 appeals heard were as of right, and 60 were by leave. In 2010, 15 appeals heard were as of right and 50 were by leave. In 2011, 19 appeals heard were as of right and 51 were by leave. In 2012, 15 appeals heard were as of right and 63 were by leave. In 2013, 12 appeals heard were as of right and 63 were by leave. In 2014, 22 appeals heard were as of right and 58 were by leave. In 2015, 15 appeals heard were as of right and 48 were by leave. In 2016, 15 appeals heard were as of right and 48 were by leave. In 2017, 17 appeals heard were as of right and 49 were by leave. In 2018, 21 appeals heard were as of right and 45 were by leave.



Note: Not all appeals heard in one year are decided in that year. Some cases may be decided in the year after they are heard. Statistics about appeals heard and appeals decided will therefore be slightly different. Also, appeals that have issues in common may be heard separately but decided in a single judgment.

Outcomes of Decisions on Appeals Heard
Description of image

This bar graph shows the outcomes of decisions on appeals heard by year. In 2009, 29 appeals were allowed and 43 appeals were dismissed. In 2010, 28 appeals were allowed and 37 appeals were dismissed. In 2011, 34 appeals were allowed and 35 appeals were dismissed. In 2012, 34 appeals were allowed and 44 appeals were dismissed. In 2013, 29 appeals were allowed and 45 appeals were dismissed. In 2014, 35 appeals were allowed and 44 appeals were dismissed. In 2015, 24 appeals were allowed and 39 appeals were dismissed. In 2016, 32 appeals were allowed and 31 appeals were dismissed. In 2017, 31 appeals were allowed and 35 appeals were dismissed. In 2018, 20 appeals were allowed and 21 appeals were dismissed, and 25 appeals were on reserve.

Note: Appeals where a rehearing or remand was ordered or that were discontinued after hearing are not counted, nor are opinions on references under s. 53 of the Supreme Court Act.
*There were 25 appeals still on reserve (that had not been decided) on December 31, 2018.

Number of hearing days

Number of hearing days
Description of image

This graphic shows the number of hearing days per year. In 2009, the Court sat for 55 hearing days. In 2010, 51 days. In 2011, 60 days. In 2012, 65 days. In 2013, 65 days. In 2014, 63 days. In 2015, 50 days. In 2016, 53 days. In 2017, 60 days. In 2018, 59 days.



trends

Breakdown of Cases Decided

Outcomes of Cases Decided
Description of image

The first bar graph shows the outcome of cases decided each year. In 2009, 26 appeals were allowed and 44 appeals were dismissed. In 2010, 29 appeals were allowed and 40 appeals were dismissed. In 2011, 35 appeals were allowed and 35 appeals were dismissed. In 2012, 31 appeals were allowed and 52 appeals were dismissed. In 2013, 39 appeals were allowed and 39 appeals were dismissed. In 2014, 23 appeals were allowed and 52 appeals were dismissed. In 2015, 35 appeals were allowed and 39 appeals were dismissed. In 2016, 29 appeals were allowed and 28 appeals were dismissed. In 2017, 28 appeals were allowed and 39 appeals were dismissed. In 2018, 33 appeals were allowed and 31 appeals were dismissed.

The second bar graph shows the percentage of appeals allowed each year. In 2009, 37% of appeals were allowed. In 2010, 42%. In 2011, 50%. In 2012, 37%. In 2013, 50%. In 2014, 31%. In 2015, 47%. In 2016, 51%. In 2017, 42%. In 2018, 52%.



Note: The appeals to which the judgments relate may have been heard in a previous year. Opinions on references under s. 53 of the Supreme Court Act are not included.

Delivery of Decision on Case
Description of image

This bar graph shows how and when a decision on a case was delivered, whether from the bench (that is, an oral decision delivered right away) or reserved (with written reasons delivered later). In 2009, 2 decisions were delivered from the bench and 68 were reserved. In 2010, 4 decisions were delivered from the bench and 65 were reserved. In 2011, 8 decisions were delivered from the bench and 63 were reserved. In 2012, 8 decisions were delivered from the bench and 75 were reserved. In 2013, 9 decisions were delivered from the bench and 69 were reserved. In 2014, 22 decisions were delivered from the bench and 55 were reserved. In 2015, 16 decisions were delivered from the bench and 58 were reserved. In 2016, 13 decisions were delivered from the bench and 44 were reserved. In 2017, 19 decisions were delivered from the bench and 48 were reserved. In 2018, 20 decisions were delivered from the bench and 44 were reserved.

Unanimous vs. Split Decisions
Description of image

The first bar graph shows unanimous versus split decisions each year. In 2009, 44 decisions were unanimous and 26 were split. In 2010, 52 decisions were unanimous and 17 were split. In 2011, 53 decisions were unanimous and 18 were split. In 2012, 60 decisions were unanimous and 23 were split. In 2013, 53 decisions were unanimous and 25 were split. In 2014, 61 decisions were unanimous and 16 were split. In 2015, 52 decisions were unanimous and 22 were split. In 2016, 35 decisions were unanimous and 22 were split. In 2017, 36 decisions were unanimous and 31 were split. In 2018, 31 decisions were unanimous and 33 were split.

The second bar graph shows the percentage of unanimous judgments each year. In 2009, 63% of decisions were unanimous. In 2010, 75%. In 2011, 75%. In 2012, 72%. In 2013, 68%. In 2014, 79%. In 2015, 70%. In 2016, 61%. In 2017, 54%. In 2018, 48% of decisions were unanimous.



Yearly Overview of the Court’s Appeal Decisions

Yearly Overview of the Court’s Appeal Decisions
Description of image

The first bar graph shows the number of decisions issued each year. In 2009, a total of 62 decisions were issued. In 2010, 67. In 2011, 66. In 2012, 75. In 2013, 73. In 2014, 77. In 2015, 65. In 2016, 56. In 2017, 64. In 2018, 59 decisions were issued by the Court.

The second bar graph shows the number of decisions on reserve (or not yet decided) on December 31st of that year. In 2009, 40 decisions were on reserve. In 2010, there were 36. In 2011, there were 35. In 2012, there were 30. In 2013, there were 27. In 2014, there were 29. In 2015, there were 18. In 2016, there were 24. In 2017, there were 25. In 2018, there were 25 decisions on reserve.

Average Time (in Months)

Average Time (in Months)
Description of image

This graphic shows the average time in months for each part of the process. In 2009, it took 3.2 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 7.6 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 7.4 months between hearing and judgment. In 2010, it took 3.4 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 7.7 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 7.7 months between hearing and judgment. In 2011, it took 4.1 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 8.7 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 6.2 months between hearing and judgment. In 2012, it took 4.4 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 9 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 6.3 months between hearing and judgment. In 2013, it took 3.3 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 8.2 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 6.2 months between hearing and judgment. In 2014, it took 3.2 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 8.2 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 4.1 months between hearing and judgment. In 2015, it took 4.1 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 7.3 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 5.8 months between hearing and judgment. In 2016, it took 4 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 7.5 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 4.8 months between hearing and judgment. In 2017, it took 3.8 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 7.4 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 4.6 months between hearing and judgment. In 2018, it took 5.5 months between filing and decision on application for leave to appeal, 6.7 months between granting of leave (or filing of notice as of right) and hearing, and 4.8 months between hearing and judgment.