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14 Cards in this Set

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U.S. Supreme Court
The highest court in the federal judicial system. Composed of a chief justice and eight associate justices. This court has final jurisdiction in matters tried in the lower federal courts and can also hear certain cases on appeal from the highest courts in the state systems if a constitutional question of federal law is involved.
U.S. Court of Appeals
An appellate court. Reviews cases from lower federal courts. There are currently 13 judicial circuits, each of which has a U.S. Court of Appeals.
U.S. District court
A federal trial court or a federal court of original jurisdiction. The court in which a case is first tried in the federal court system.
special courts
There several special U.S. courts that have limited jurisdiction, including the Court of Claims, the Court of Customs and patent Appeals, and the Tax Court
supreme court
The highest court in most state court systems. Certain cases decided in a state supreme court may be appealed to the U.S.Supreme Court if a constitutional question of federal law is involved.
court of appeal
A court that reviews cases from the trial courts or lower courts. The highest court in states not having a supreme court.
appellate court
Same as court of appeal. A court that reviews cases that are appealed from a lower court.
trial court
A court of original jurisdiction. Hears a case the first time it is tried in court.
court of original jurisdiction
A court that hears a case the first time it is tried in court. A trial court is a court of original jurisdiction.
court of record
A court in which all proceedings are recorded for future reference. Trial courts, appellate courts, and supreme courts are usually courts of record.
probate court
A court that deals with the probate of wills and the settlement of estates. May also be called orphan's court or surrogate court. In some states the probate court has jurisdiction over the estates of minors and the appointment of guardians.
lower or inferior court
A court that has a very limited jurisdiction and whose cases may be appealed to a higher court. In some states a written record is not required for the proceedings.
court not of record
A court in which the proceedings are not required to be recorded. Usually the lower or inferior courts are courts not of record. However, many states now require all courts to be courts of record. A court not of record, such as a small claims court, cannot impose fines or imprisonment.
small claims court
A court established in some states to settle minor disputes between individuals in which the parties represent themselves without the assistance of attorneys. Usually the judge's decision is final, and the case cannot be appealed to a higher court.