February 16, 2022

Lenczner Slaght Advances its Data-Driven Decisions Program, Releasing its First Publicly Available Dataset

Canada’s leading litigation firm continues to prioritize data-driven decision-making as a key part of its litigation strategy. And now you can too with the launch of The Supreme Court of Canada Decisions Project. Access the dataset and coding manual on supremecourtdatabase.com.

Lenczner Slaght Data-Driven Decisions means that we advocate for and advise clients based not just on our judgment and analysis of applicable case law, but also based on research and empirical data, where it is available. This includes the development of our own proprietary datasets and analytics that help us give clients the best advice possible based on real-world data.

“The Supreme Court of Canada Decisions Project is unique among our projects, because we make our entire dataset public and available for anyone to download and use as they see fit,” says Paul-Erik Veel, Partner and Lead of our Data-Driven Decisions program. “This is the first publicly available and comprehensive dataset covering over 60 years of Supreme Court of Canada decisions. Being expert litigators means working with leading academics to advance our collective understanding of the law.  We hope that this dataset will provide a useful resource for everyone interested in the Supreme Court, including academics, practicing lawyers, law students, legal technologists, and more.”


The Supreme Court of Canada is Canada’s highest Court. While lawyers across the country carefully read and parse individual decisions, there has historically been limited quantitative analysis of its appeal decisions. We hope that that this project will change that.

We were provided a dataset of every Supreme Court of Canada decision from the 1954 through 2013. This dataset had initially been prepared under the supervision of Professor Ben Alarie and Andrew Green of the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. We validated and cleaned the historical data, and we also updated the dataset to the present. Our dataset now contains dozens of datapoints about every Supreme Court of Canada decision, including information about appellants and respondents, case history, case dispositions, case issues, and judges’ votes in each case.

Visit supremecourtdatabase.com to learn more about how to use and cite it.


In addition to the Supreme Court of Canada Decisions Project, we have also launched two additional projects that we use to better analyze cases and advocate for our clients:

  • The Federal Court of Appeal Patent Cases Project – A dataset of every substantive decision of the Federal Court of Appeal in patent disputes from 2000 onward. This dataset allows us to provide our clients with benchmarks for the likelihood of success on different types of appeals and the timelines for resolution of appeals, among other things. Our 2021 Year in Review: Patents guide contains our analysis of this data.
  • The Ontario Court of Appeals Project – We prepared a hand-coded dataset containing information about every Ontario Court of Appeal decision from 2020 onward. This dataset allows us to understand the factors that impact the likelihood of success on appeal. In parallel, we are working with Professor Wolfgang Alschner of the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law to build tools to automate the collection and analysis of data pertaining to more than a decade of decisions. These efforts will provide us with insights as to long-term trends and developments at the Court of Appeal.

Learn more about our Data-Driven Decisions program and our new and current datasets here.