Systematically assessing the number or people, appropriate resources, and measures of caseloads is critical for ensuring that courts and related agencies are able to deliver quality service to the public effectively and without delay. Given the increasing number and complexity of cases, it is important for states to use an objective workload assessment process, combined with an interconnectedness of judicial and staff work that allows for a holistic assessment of resources needed, to ensure that existing judges and court support staff are used effectively and allocated equitably.
Links to related online resources are listed below. Non-digitized publications may
be borrowed from the NCSC Library; call numbers are provided.
NCSC Area of Expertise.
Workflow Management Systems Vendors from the Court Technology Vendor List.
A comprehensive and objective assessment of attorney and staff resources in Virginia public defender officers.
This Guide and Toolkit outline a process that courts can measure court performance and judicial workload. They have been designed to be meaningful to the largest number of courts as possible.
From the one-judge/two-magistrate Morrow County Court of Common Pleas in Ohio to the trial courts of Washington, from statewide policy initiatives of the judicial branch in Arizona, California, North Carolina and Utah to locally imposed "audits" by county funding authorities in Lake County, Indiana, and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, performance measurement in courts is an important, rapidly emerging trend.
The purpose of the staffing study detailed in this report was to develop an accurate tool to measure the work demands placed on staff and account for the resources required in each of the departments in the Massachusetts Trial Courts.
Understanding that any comprehensive review of the Judicial Branch would require an accurate assessment of the staffing needs of the courts, the Supreme Court contracted with the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) to conduct a “weighted caseload study” (WCLS). This type of study has been recommended since at least 1944 in previous studies of court operations in Kansas.
This report describes the methods and results of the NCSC's comprehensive evaluation of the Maryland Office of the Public Defender (OPD) attorney and support staff workload. The primary goal of the project was to establish a transparent formula for OPD to use in assessing the appropriate levels of attorney and staff resources necessary to provide effective and competent legal representation.
This technical report provides a detailed discussion of the workload assessment methodology and results, and enumerates the policy decisions made by Justice Needs Assessment Committee.
The primary purpose of this project was to determine the number of support staff Minnesota courts need to provide effective service to the public.
How many judges does the State of Minnesota need to provide effective case resolution? To answer this question, the Conference of Chief Judges and the Minnesota Supreme Court contracted with the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) to determine how to measure judicial workload in Minnesota District courts. A clear measure of court workload is central to establish the number of judges needed to resolve all cases coming before the court. Adequate resources are essential if the Minnesota judiciary is to manage and resolve court business effectively and without delay while also delivering quality service to the public. Meeting these challenges involves systematically assessing the number of judges required to handle caseloads, and resolving whether judicial resources are allocated equitably across the state.
The workload assessment is founded upon a statewide time study that provided a detailed empirical profile of the amount of time Superior Court judges currently spend handling cases of various types—including both on-bench and off-bench work—as well as other essential judicial functions such as travel and administrative work.
The Renton Municipal Court is a court of limited jurisdiction with a caseload that consists of city ordinance and Revised Code of Washington criminal misdemeanors, criminal traffic, traffic and non-traffic infractions, and parking cases. The primary contribution to the increase in the Court’s workload was the installation in 2008 of traffic safety cameras, adding several thousand new cases each year.
This report updates a previous study in order to reflect current practices and case filings in determining judicial need.
Final report for the Wisconsin Judicial Needs Assessment project.