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Chapter 3, Court Systems 3-1 Forms of Dispute Resolution

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1 Chapter 3, Court Systems 3-1 Forms of Dispute Resolution
3-2 The Federal Court System 3-3 State Court Systems

2 Dispute Resolution How Can Disputes Be Resolved Without Going to Court?
Litigate – to take disputes to court. Negotiate – reach a mutually acceptable solution, Mediation – Mediator tries to develop a solution acceptable to both, Actions are Advisory… They Do NOT Bind Parties. Arbitration – Arbitrator holds an informal hearing to determine what happened. Decision IS Binding on Both Parties. Arbitration provisions can be included in agreements.

3 How Do Courts Settle Disputes?
Court – governmental forum that administers justice under the law. Courts decide Civil disputes and Criminal cases. A court may award damages in civil cases, impose punishment in criminal cases, or grant other appropriate relief. The 2 levels of courts are Trial and Appellate.

4 TRIAL Courts A Trial Court – is the first court to hear a dispute.
It has Original Jurisdiction over a case, (has power to make initial decision of fact and law). Witnesses Testify, Review Evidence Verdict – decision in the case Trial courts – Consists of - Judge, Lawyers, Clerks (enter cases on calendar, keep records of proceedings, and sometimes compute court costs), Sheriffs, or their deputies- bailiffs, summon witnesses, keep order in court, and take steps to carry out judgments in the state court systems, Marshals have these duties in the federal court system, and Juries are citizens sworn by a court to decide issues of fact in court cases.

5 APPELLATE Courts Do Not hear witnesses, nor accept new evidence,
Reviews decisions of lower courts when a party claims an error was made during the previous proceeding. Do Not hear witnesses, nor accept new evidence, AC - concerned with ERRORS of Law. AC – examine transcripts (verbatim record of trial), read appellate briefs (written arguments by attorneys), listen to attorney’s oral arguments and may question attorneys about case, and FINALLY…decide whether the decision of the lower court should be Affirmed (upheld), Reversed (overturned), Amended (changed), or Remanded (sent back to the trial court for corrective action or possibly a new trial).

6 Lesson 3-2, The Federal Court System
GOALS: Identify the source of power of the federal courts Name the major federal courts & describe their jurisdictions and powers

7 Origin of the Federal Court System
The federal courts received their power from the Constitution. However, the Constitution granted Congress the power to establish courts inferior to the U.S. Supreme Court

8 Jurisdiction of the Federal Courts
3 levels of federal courts with General Jurisdiction (can hear almost any kind of case): System Illustration pg. 53 Federal (U.S.) District Courts – lowest level, trial court. Have original jurisdiction over… Federal Courts of Appeals – power is exercised when the result of a case in a lower court is appealed by one party. U.S. Supreme Court –has original & appellate jurisdiction, If USSC believes that a case contains a constitutional issue, it will issue to the last court a writ of certiorari. Special Jurisdiction – hears only 1 specific type of case

9 Lesson 3-3, State Court Systems
State legal system resembles the Federal System. General Jurisdiction organized into 3 tiers: (Illustration Textbook, pg. 56) Geographically based Trial-Court System, Appellate layer, both are controlled/supervised by: State Supreme Court

10 State Courts w/ Specialized Jurisdiction
Associate Circuit/county courts – lower layer of courts below main courts of general original jurisdiction. Takes a significant burden off the higher courts, Can appeal to circuit court level for a trial on record, Hears minor criminal cases, state traffic offenses, & lawsuits (no more than $25,000) City or Municipal Courts – Administer their own ordinances, Divided into 2 divisions: traffic & criminal, Can be appealed to the circuit court level.

11 State Courts w/ Specialized Jurisdiction, Con’t…
Small Claims Court – Hears minor individual lawsuits, small amounts, $2,500 or less. Generally no attorneys, no jury, & no formal rules for evidence, Can be appealed to the circuit court level. Juvenile Court – Special court for young members of society, typically under 18, Juvenile is entitled to their constitutional rights, Emphasis is generally on Rehabilitation, not punishment. Possibilities: foster home, detention in correctional facility. If Rehab. fails can be tried/punished as an adult (serious offense) Records are not open to the public. Probate Court – Administer wills and estates

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