Supreme Court of Missouri Decisions

Founded in 1820, the Missouri Supreme Court has the discretion to review appeals of cases that involve questions of general interest or importance. It also may review an appeal if a lower court reaches a decision that conflicts with a pre-existing appellate decision, or if the Supreme Court finds that the law should be re-examined. The Court holds exclusive jurisdiction over appeals in certain types of cases, such as those involving the death penalty, challenges to the outcome of an election, or challenges to the validity of state or federal laws or provisions of the state constitution.

Of the seven members of the Missouri Supreme Court, only the Chief Justice is known as a justice, while the other six members are known as judges. Article V, Section 21 of the Missouri Constitution provides the qualifications for becoming a judge on the Court. A candidate must be at least 30 years old, a qualified voter in Missouri for at least nine years, a U.S. citizen for at least 15 years, and licensed to practice law in Missouri. A judge must retire when they reach the age of 70.

Judges are selected in a process known as the Missouri Plan. This involves a list of three candidates submitted by the Missouri Appellate Judicial Commission to the Governor of Missouri. The seven-member Commission consists of the Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court, three attorneys chosen by the Missouri State Bar, and three citizens of Missouri who are appointed by the Governor. If the Governor does not choose one of the candidates provided by the Commission, the Commission will choose one of them. A newly appointed judge must go through a retention election in the first general election that occurs at least one year after their appointment. If they win this election, they will serve a 12-year term. The judges on the Missouri Supreme Court elect the Chief Justice, who serves a two-year term.

Browse Opinions From the Supreme Court of Missouri

Recent Decisions From the Supreme Court of Missouri
Sherrer v. Boston Scientific Corp.  
Date: October 13, 2020
Docket Number: SC97465

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the circuit court in favor of Boston Scientific Corporation (BSC) and C.R. Bard Inc. on Plaintiff's claims related to Defendants' design and manufacture of polypropylene mesh sl...

State v. Golden  
Date: October 13, 2020
Docket Number: SC98018

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed Defendant's conviction of felony stealing, holding that because Defendant's conviction for felony stealing was not final when State v. Bazell, 497 S.W.3d 263 (Mo. banc 2016), was decided, Defen...

State v. Loper  
Date: October 13, 2020
Docket Number: SC98295

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of first-degree attempted rape and other offenses, holding that the circuit court committed no error regarding the claims Defendant asserted on appeal. After a jury tria...

Missouri State Conference of National Ass'n for Advancement of Colored People v. State  
Date: October 9, 2020
Docket Number: SC98744

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the circuit court denying Appellants' request for injunctive and declaratory relief that allows all Missouri voters to vote by mail without having their signatures on their ball...

Moore v. Bi-State Development Agency  
Date: September 15, 2020
Docket Number: SC98169

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the circuit court reducing Plaintiff's personal injury award against Bi-State Development Agency (hereinafter, "Metro") to comply with the statutory cap set forth for public ent...

Lollar v. Lollar  
Date: September 1, 2020
Docket Number: SC97984

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the circuit court dissolving Wife's marriage to Husband and distributing the marital estate, holding that the circuit court did not err in awarding a marital 401(k) account of u...

State v. Carpenter  
Date: September 1, 2020
Docket Number: SC98088

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated the judgment of the circuit court convicting Defendant of one count of robbery in the first degree, holding that the circuit court erred in excluding expert witness testimony regarding various f...

Green v. Fotoohighiam  
Date: August 11, 2020
Docket Number: SC98262

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the order of the circuit court entering partial summary judgment in favor of Plaintiff on the issue of liability, holding that the circuit court did not err in entering summary judgment on the...

State v. Knox  
Date: August 11, 2020
Docket Number: SC98298

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the circuit court against Defendant for one count of class C felony stealing and two counts of class A misdemeanor stealing, holding that absent proof of value, the offense subm...

State ex rel. Woodco, Inc. v. Honorable Jennifer Phillips  
Date: July 28, 2020
Docket Number: SC98227

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court made permanent its preliminary writ of prohibition prohibiting the circuit court from ordering certain defendants to be joined as necessary parties, holding that Mo. R. Civ. P. 52.04(a) did not mandate...

State ex rel. Jonas v. Minor  
Date: June 30, 2020
Docket Number: SC97674

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court granted Petitioner's petition for a writ of habeas corpus, holding that Petitioner should have been discharged from probation before the State attempted to revoke probation and the circuit court suspend...

State v. Brandolese  
Date: June 30, 2020
Docket Number: SC97697

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the circuit court convicting Defendant of second-degree domestic assault and armed criminal action, holding that none of Defendant's allegations of error entitled Defendant to r...

State ex rel. Universal Credit Acceptance, Inc. v. Honorable Reno  
Date: June 30, 2020
Docket Number: SC97872

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court made permanent its preliminary writ of mandamus compelling the circuit court to transfer the underlying lawsuit to St. Charles County, holding that the circuit court had no authority to change venue and...

Laughlin v. Perry  
Date: June 30, 2020
Docket Number: SC98012

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the circuit court affirming a jury's verdict in favor of Respondent on his legal malpractice claim, holding that public defenders are entitled to official immunity. Appellants...

Planned Parenthood of St. Louis Region v. Department of Social Services, Division of Medical Services  
Date: June 30, 2020
Docket Number: SC98020

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the circuit court declaring section 11.800 of House Bill No. 2011 (HB2011) invalid, holding that there was a direct conflict between the language of Mo. Rev. Stat. 208.153.2 and...

The opinions published on Justia State Caselaw are sourced from individual state court sites. These court opinions may not be the official published versions, and you should check your local court rules before citing to them. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site, or the information linked to on the state site.