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Court Performance

The Cuyahoga County Domestic Relations Court is committed to high performance and providing transparency into the performance of its operations for a number of years.

To that purpose, the Court has begun implementation of a set of nationally recognized performance measures, called CourTools

CourTools is a set of ten performance measures that were developed by the
National Center for State Courts (NCSC), along with other court leaders and experts. These performance measures provide courts a method to collect and analyze relevant data to evaluate their own performance and compare themselves with other courts. This process provides a framework for the managing of limited resources in a way that monitors key areas of court operations to assist the Court to better serve the public.

The Court has completed work on five of the measures: Access and Fairness, Clearance Rates, Time to Disposition, Age of Active Pending Caseload and Employee Satisfaction. These reports can be found below. This web page will be updated in the future as additional measures are developed.

Information about the ten measures and the relevant reports can be found below:

Access and Fairness

Definition Ratings of court users on the court's accessibility and its treatment of customers in terms of fairness, equality, and respect.
Purpose Many assume that "winning" or "losing" is what matters most to citizens when dealing with the courts. However, research consistently shows that positive perceptions of court experience are shaped more by court users' perceptions of how they are treated in court, and whether the court's process of making decisions seems fair. This measure provides a tool for surveying all court users about their experience in the courthouse. Comparison of results by location, division, type of customer, and across courts can inform and improve court management practices.

Clearance Rates

Definition The number of outgoing cases as a percentage of the number of incoming cases.
Purpose Clearance rate measures whether the court is keeping up with its incoming caseload. If cases are not disposed in a timely manner, a backlog of cases awaiting disposition will grow. This measure is a single number that can be compared within the court for any and all case types, from month to month and year to year, or between one court and another. Knowledge of clearance rates by case type can help a court pinpoint emerging problems and indicate where improvements may be made. Courts should aspire to clear (i.e., dispose of) at least as many cases as have been filed/reopened/reactivated in a period by having a clearance rate of 100 percent or higher.

Time to Disposition

Definition The percentage of cases disposed or otherwise resolved within established time frames.
Purpose This measure, used in conjunction with Measure 2 Clearance Rates and Measure 4 Age of Active Pending Caseload, is a fundamental management tool that assesses the length of time it takes a court to process cases. It compares a court’s performance with local, state, or national guidelines for timely case processing. When the underlying data conform to the State Court Guide to Statistical Reporting, the measure takes into account periods of inactivity beyond the court control (e.g., absconded defendants, cases suspended pending decision on an appeal) and provides a framework for meaningful measurement across all case types.

Age of Active Pending Caseload

Definition The age of the active cases that are pending before the court, measured as the number of days from filing until the time of measurement.
Purpose Cases filed but not yet disposed make up the court's pending caseload. Having a complete and accurate inventory of active pending cases as well as tracking their number and age is important because this pool of cases potentially requires court action. Examining the age of pending cases makes clear, for example, the number and type of cases drawing near or about to surpass the court's case processing time standards. Once the age spectrum of cases is determined, the court can focus attention on what is required to ensure cases are brought to completion within reasonable timeframes.