Court System Structure
The federal courts system is made up of two types of courts; the first type is known as the Article III court. In the article III courts it includes the U.S District Courts, the U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal and the U.S. Supreme Court. It also has two special courts the U.S. Court of Claims and the U.S. Court of International Trade. The judges in the federal court are appointed by the President of the United States, with the advice and consent of the Senate. Federal judges remain in office a lifetime. These courts are considered special because unlike other courts, they are not of general jurisdiction that can hear almost any case. The second type of court is also established by congress and those courts are the magistrate court and bankruptcy courts.
The U.S, District Courts are trial courts or courts of original jurisdiction and most federal cases begin here, they hear both civil and criminal cases. The U.S Circuit of Appeal courts are divided into 12 regional circuits and sit in various cities throughout the country. The court of appeals for the federal circuit sits in Washington. If a defendant is fount not guilty in a criminal case and are dissatisfied with the judgment of a U.S. District court may appeal this court in their district to handle his or her case. The U.S Supreme Court sits apex of the federal court system, parties who are not satisfied with the decision of a U.S. Circuit of Appeal or a supreme court can petition this court to hear their case. The court will decide to accept such cases or not.
The Tennessee State court system known includes Supreme, The Chief Justice, District Court of Appeals, Appellate Court, Circuit Court and County Courts. The Tennessee Supreme is the highest court in the state and the Chief Justice oversees the entire state courts system, which includes many management functions centralized in Nashville in the Office of the State Court Administrator.
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