Four of the nine members of the U.S. Supreme Court must agree to hear a particular case. When the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court agree to hear a case, they technically are granting what is called a writ of certiorari.
Annually, the Supreme Court receives more than 7,000 requests from parties seeking to have cases heard before the Court. Of that number, the Court grants certiorari, or agrees to hear, between 100 and 150 individual cases. The vast majority, but not all, of the cases heard by the Supreme Court come through one of the U.S. Courts of Appeal or one of the various individual state Supreme Courts. The Supreme Court begins hearing cases on the first Monday of October each year.