How Long Do Criminal Cases Typically Take to Argument and Decision?

Last time, we reviewed the lag time data for the Court’s civil cases between 2005 and 2017 – specifically, (1) grant of petition for leave to appeal to oral argument; and (2) oral argument to decision. This time, we’re looking at the Court’s experience with its criminal docket.

Once again, we have only the argument-to-decision number for the years 2006 and 2007, since data on conference results (and therefore grant dates) is difficult to locate. In 2006, the Court averaged 112.03 days in criminal cases from argument to decision. In 2007, the Court averaged 139.85 days.

In 2008, the Court averaged 238.23 days in criminal cases from the grant of the petition for leave to appeal to oral argument, and a further 131.92 days to decision. In 2009, both sides of the ledger were up, as the Court averaged 286 from grant to argument, and 164.27 days from argument to decision. In 2010, the Court averaged 270 days in criminal cases from grant to argument, but only 136.39 days to decision. In 2011, both numbers were essentially flat – 269 days from grant to argument, 144.7 days from argument to decision. In 2012, the lag from grant of petition for leave to appeal to argument increased a bit to 284 days, but the lag from argument to decision fell to 124.21 days. In 2013, grant to argument took 282.45 days, while the average lag from argument to decision edged up to 138.03 days.

In 2014, the average time from grant to argument fell slightly to 268.09 days, but argument to decision fell to its lowest level during the period – only 100.41 days. In 2015, the Court averaged 274.28 days from grant to argument, and 128.09 from argument to decision. In 2016, grant to argument was again flat, averaging 276.57 days in criminal cases. But the lag from argument to decision was up to 153.79 days. Last year, the Court averaged 279.59 days from grant of petition for leave to appeal in criminal cases to argument, and a further 140.34 days from argument to decision.

Join us back here next week as we continue our review of the data on lag times at the Court.

Image courtesy of Flickr by Michel Curi (no changes).