Each year, the Unified Judicial System publishes its fiscal year report, and this year was no exception.  The annual report provides a plethora of information related to the administration of the circuit courts and the South Dakota Supreme Court.

The Fiscal Year 2016 Annual Report provides valuable insight into the Court’s work.  First, it appears that the number of appeals, notices of review, certificates of probable cause, and reinstatements has remained relatively stable over the past several years, while the number of intermediate appeals and original proceedings appears to be trending up.  Of note, the Court has not granted a single petition for rehearing in the last five fiscal years.

A couple interesting notes about dispositions.  We can see that the Court decided 84 cases through summary dispositions in the most recent fiscal year.  With the exception of FY2012, which saw 119 cases decided through summary dispositions, that number seems to be holding fairly steady, although with some variance.

These numbers also tell us about the great deal of work that the Court does “behind the scenes.”  We are all, of course, aware of the Court’s work on its regular calendar and its issuance of decisions.  These numbers tell us, however, that the Court was also responsible for 96 bar admissions, 18 bar admissions under SDCL 16-18-2, processed 156 bar applications, and answered 1350 bar inquires.

Stay tuned for further posts analyzing these numbers and offering insight into how statistical information regarding the workings of the Court can benefit your practice.