UKSC Blog’s statistics department has, again, been hard at work during the legal vacation.  We now present the second in our series of short statistical surveys of the work of the Court, this time covering Hilary Term, 2010.  The first survey in the series covered Michaelmas Term 2009.

In the Hilary Term the Court sat for 26.5 days out of a possible 48 (that is 12 weeks of 4 sitting days).   In contrast, in Michaelmas Term, it sat for 33 days out of a possible 45.  It heard 14 substantive appeals and two applications.  Once again, Lord Hope sat  for the most days, 22.5.   The figures for the other justices were as follows:  Lord Phillips 12.5; Lord Saville 2; Lord Rodger 19; Lord Walker 16.5; Lady Hale 16.5; Lord Brown 18.5, Lord Mance 12.5; Lord Collins 12.5; Lord Kerr 19 and Lord Clarke 12.5.  These figures do not, of course, include days sitting in the Privy Council.

The Court gave judgments in 14 substantive appeals and in 2 applications (both in HM Treasury v Ahmed).  The average time between hearing and the delivery of judgment was 8 weeks (up from 5½ last term).   The longest period of delay between hearing and judgment was 18 weeks (Agbaje v Akinnoye-Agbaje [2010] UKSC 13) with the shortest being an impressive one day (W (Children) [2010] UKSC 12).

Of the 14 appeals which were the subject of judgments 5 were allowed, 7 dismissed and 2 were the subject of references to the European Court of Justice (contrast Michaelmas Term where 8 were allowed and 8 were dismissed).  Of the 16 judgments given, (in the 14 appeals and 2 applications) 13 were unanimous, 2 included one dissent (HM Treasury v Ahmed [2010] UKSC 2 and HM Treasury v Ahmed (No.2) [2010] UKSC 5) and one included two dissents (Martin v HM Advocate [2010] UKSC 10). Lord Hope, Lord Rodger, Lord Brown (on one issue in HM Treasury v Ahmed) and Lord Kerr each dissented once.

The Court now publishes applications for permission to appeal (see here and here).   There were 47 permission decisions this term with permission being given in 20 cases (42%).

In relation to the Michaelmas term we recorded, on the basis of the information supplied to the ICLR, that there had been 57 permission applications with permission being granted in 17 cases (29.8%).  We can now update those figures on the basis of the material on the Court’s website.  There were, in fact, 65 applications for permission to appeal, 2 were withdrawn, 1 was struck out, 45 were refused and 17 were granted (26%).