The New Jersey Supreme Court issued one opinion from March 6-12. As of March 12, the court issued 12 opinions in 2023—one fewer than this point a year ago. The one opinion is below:
- New Jersey v. Smart, where the court concluded that probable cause to search the defendant’s vehicle without a warrant was not prompted by unforeseeable and spontaneous circumstances, as required by law. Therefore, the court ruled that evidence seized from the vehicle during the search could not be submitted at trial.
From March 6-12, state supreme courts issued 186 opinions nationally. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued the most with 41. The court leads in number of opinions issued because it publishes concurring and dissenting opinions separately, and when deciding whether a case can be appealed, the court logs these decisions as standalone, typically single-page, orders. State supreme courts in 16 states issued the fewest with zero. Courts where judges are elected have issued 120 opinions, while courts whose members are appointed have issued 66.
The New Jersey Supreme Court is the state’s court of last resort and has seven judgeships. The current chief of the court is Stuart Rabner. The court issued 55 opinions in 2022 and 2021. Nationally, state supreme courts issued 9,243 opinions in 2022 and 10,133 in 2021. The courts have issued 1,548 opinions in 2023. Courts where judges are elected have issued 985 opinions, while courts whose members are appointed have issued 563. New Jersey is a Democratic trifecta, meaning Democrats control the governorship and both chambers of the state legislature.