Essay Title: 

characteristics of major court systems

April 3, 2016 | Author: | Posted in government, social sciences

Characteristics of Major Court Systems

January 30 , 2007

Introduction

Notwithstanding various differences in its political structures , every nation state ‘s organic laws creating a court system which exercises judicial powers and acts as final arbiter of conflicts involving legal questions is inherent in a check and balance system . The United States court system is an embodiment of two principal systems the federal and the state courts . This will examine the unique characteristics of various courts system both in the state and federal levels

The State Courts ‘ System

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. Wilson ‘s book on American Government ‘ stated that state courts ‘ structure looks like a federal system with various trial courts intermediate appellate courts with a single supreme court . Diversity and specialization are the major characteristics of the state courts ‘ system (1992 , 654

State trial courts tried more civil and criminal cases than the federal courts and majority of the criminal offenders were prosecuted for violations of state criminal statutes . On the other hand , civil law violations form part of the backlog that state court decides every year Political , business , and local government disputes are among the other cases these courts has jurisdiction thus , this court system serves as an important vehicle for policy determining of local policies (Johnson Aldrich , Miller et al , 1990 ,

.A-11

Trial Courts . State courts system ‘s trial courts are of two kinds First , the minor courts handling traffic tickets , small claims , and minor criminal offenses . Second , the trial courts with broad jurisdiction over all criminal and civil matters . The second kind of trial courts is popular in various names such as superiors ‘ courts county courts , circuit courts , or courts of common pleas . It is in these courts that serious crimes are tried and major law suits ‘ settlement (Wilson , 1990

. 655

Appeals Court . At the top of the state ‘s trial courts are appeals court which is the state ‘s equivalent of the United States [Federal] Supreme Court . These courts has the power to declare state government ‘s acts as unconstitutional and at times can also pronounce federal laws as unconstitutional subject for the review of the United States Supreme Court . They are know in Maine and Massachusetts as Supreme Judicial Courts and in Maryland and New York as the Court of Appeals (Wilson 1992

655

The Federal Courts

The US federal Constitution provides for the creation of federal courts exercising judicial powers that is separate and distinct from the powers granted to the federal government (Executive ) or the legislature (Congress . Thus , Article 111 , Section 1 of the Federal Constitution provides that the judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one Supreme Court , and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish . In accordance with these provisions , Congress passed the Judiciary Act of 1789 , organizing the US Supreme Court and establishing a system of federal courts having inferior jurisdiction

The Supreme Court . The court of last resort is the United States Supreme Court operating… [banner_entry_footer]

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