2 Alexander Hamilton, Federalist 22 “Laws are a dead letter without courts to expound and define their true meaning and operation”
3 Article III, Section I“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.”
4 Article I, Section 8, Clause 9 Congress has the expressed power “to constitute tribunals inferior to the Supreme Court.”
5 DUAL COURT SYSTEM (Federalism) 1) National Judiciary (Federal Court System):100+ courtsa. Supreme Courtb. Constitutional courtsc. Special courts2) State Judiciary:1000s of courtsState courts hear most of the cases.
7 FEDERAL COURTS These are inferior courts (lower than Supreme Court). TWO TYPES1. CONSTITUTIONAL COURTSHear more cases than special courtsCreated out of Article III powerInclude 94 District Courts, 12 Court of Appeals, US Court of International Trade, US Court of Appeals for Federal CircuitAKA “Regular Courts”, “Article III Courts”
8 INFERIOR FEDERAL COURTS Lower than the Supreme CourtTWO TYPES1. CONSTITUTIONAL COURTSHear more cases than special courtsCreated out of Article III powerInclude 94 U.S. District Courts, 12 U.S. Court of AppealsAKA “Article III Courts”
9 FEDERAL COURTS CONTINUED 2. SPECIAL COURTS*Have been created by Congress to deal with cases arising out of one of Congress’ expressed powers*AKA “Legislative Courts” or “Article I Courts”*Include US Court of Federal Claims, Territorial Courts, Courts of the District of Columbia, US tax Court, US Court of Appeals for Armed Forces, US Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims
10 Special Courts, continued Include US Court of Federal Claims (you suing the federal government)Territorial Courts (land owned by U.S. like Guam)Courts of the District of Columbia (court for people in D.C.)US Tax Court (any violation of federal tax laws)US Court of Appeals for Armed Forces (military has own set of laws, so they need their own court – appeals from JAG)US Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (if a veteran loses a service, this is where they appeal their case – like Agent Orange cases)
11 JURISDICTION Definition: The authority or subject area that a court can hear a case about.Example: Break a federal law, go to a federal court (robbing a bank).Example: Break a state law, go to a state court (speeding).
12 Types of Jurisdiction1) Exclusive Jurisdiction - cases that can only be heard in Federal Courts.Federal CrimesExamples: cases involving ambassadors, bank robbery, kidnapping, presidential assassination, killing a police officer, destroying a mailbox-$1000 fine)
13 Types of Jurisdiction1) Exclusive Jurisdiction - cases that can only be heard in Federal Courts.Federal CrimesExamples: violations of patents and copyrights, cases involving ambassadors
14 Types Of Jurisdiction, continued 2) Concurrent Jurisdiction – cases can be tried in either federal or state court.A common type of concurrent jurisdiction: is “Diverse Citizenship” –dispute involving citizens of different states.Federal District Courts may hear these if over $75,000 is involved.Defendant can have the trial moved from the Plaintiff’s state to a federal district court.Example: Land dispute between people from different states.
16 Jurisdiction Of the Federal Courts – 1. U.S Supreme court has original and appellate2. U.S Appeals courts have appellate3. U.S District courts have original
17 Original and appellate Fewest cases 80-150/year USSupreme Court9 JusticesD.C.Original and appellateFewest cases80-150/yearUS Court of Appeals12 Courts (3 judge panel)AppellateUS District Court94 Courts (judge and 2 types of juries:1. grand - indicts2. petit - determines guilty or innocence)OriginalMost cases
18 Appointing Judges, Continued If a state needs a new federal judge, the President asks the Senator from the state of the needed judge to recommend 3 candidatesSenatorial Courtesy – President will typically choose that Senator’s 1st choiceExample: In Texas, Obama would ask John Cornyn because he is the senior Senator
19 TERM and SALARY For Constitutional Courts – LIFE Until judge resigns, retires, or diesCan be removed through impeachment (13 impeached, 7 of them removed)Salary is set by Congress and can not be decreased during their term in office.A Supreme Court Justice’s salary is same as U.S. Senators, Representatives, and the Vice President.
20 DISTRICT COURTS 632 judges Handle 300,000 cases a year Created by Congress in the Judiciary Act of 1789Currently 94 district courts
21 Federal Judicial Districts Include at least one district in each State, the District of Columbia and Puerto RicoLarger, more populous states are divided into 2 or more districts2 judges assigned to each district (at least)Cases tried in district courts heard by 1 judge usually
22 DISTRICT COURT JURISDICTION Original jurisdictionMaking them the principal trial courts in the federal court systemCriminal cases – when a defendant is tried for committing some action that Congress has declared by law to be a federal crimeCivil cases – noncriminal matter, terms of contract, e.g
23 District Court Cases Bank robbery Mail fraud Counterfeiting Tax evasionBankruptcyCivil rights
24 Court of Appeals Created by Congress in 1892 Relieves the Supreme Court of burden of hearing all appealsCurrently 12 courts of appeals179 circuit judges
25 U.S. COURTS OF APPEALSD.CAndFederalCircuitMake 13
26 Appellate Court Jurisdiction Hear cases on appeals from lower fed. CourtsAlso hear appeals from several federal regulatory agencies like the Federal Trade Commission, the national labor Relations Board55,000 cases a year
27 Court of International Trade Created in 18909 judgesCivil cases arising out of tariff and other trade-related lawsPanels of 3Trials often held at major port cities