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The Federal Court System Chapter 18.1. The National and State Judiciary. Terms to know. Plaintiff: someone who brings a legal complaint Defendant: someone who is accused of wrong doing Burden of proof: what must be shown for the court to reach a decision

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the federal court system chapter 18 1

The Federal Court System Chapter 18.1

The National and State Judiciary

terms to know
Terms to know
  • Plaintiff: someone who brings a legal complaint
  • Defendant: someone who is accused of wrong doing
  • Burden of proof: what must be shown for the court to reach a decision
  • Jurisdiction: the kinds of cases a court will consider
civil and criminal law
Civil and criminal law
  • Criminal law involves acts against the security and peace of the community – the government is always the plaintiff – Burden of Proof: Beyond a Reasonable Doubt -- penalty is fines, jail, death
    • Three flavors: Felony. Misdemeanor, Violation
  • Civil law involves acts against individuals or their property – people and/or the government can be either defendants or plaintiffs -- Burden of Proof: Preponderance of the evidnce – penalty is $$
    • Two flavors: Tort – injury, Contract – disagreement over agreement
kinds of courts
Kinds of courts
  • Trial courts – determine questions of fact (who did what) and questions of law (how to apply the law in this case) jurors or judge render verdict and result
  • Appeals court determine only questions of law – multiple judges render decisions
federal courts
Federal Courts
  • District Courts are trial courts (courts of fact and law) while the Court of Appeals (three judges) and the Supreme Court (nine judges) are appeals courts
the creation of a national judiciary
The Creation of a National Judiciary

The federal court system was established by Article III of the Constitution.

Congress has the ability to organize the federal judiciary and set its jurisdiction

Federal courts interpret federal law (Congressional or Presidential Acts). They also interpret state law to make sure it does not conflict with federal law or the US Constitution

c appointment of judges
C. Appointment of Judges

1. Federal judges are nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate. They serve for life during “good behavior”.

2. Presidents almost always nominate persons from their own political party who share their ideology, with deference to the senators from the State in which the appointee will serve, and with "some" consultation of the leaders of the party to which the President belongs.

d terms and pay of judges
D. Terms and Pay of Judges

1. Federal constitutional judges are appointed for life and may be removed only through the impeachment process.

2. Congress sets judicial salaries and benefits but may not reduce them while a judge is sitting.

state courts
State Courts

Oregon Supreme Court

Final appeals court in Oregon – 7 judges

Oregon Court of Appeals

Intermediate appeals court – 3 judges in each court

Circuit and District Courts

Trial Court – 1 judge, 12 jurors – takes 10 jurors to come to a decision

oregon courts
Oregon courts
  • Oregon Supreme Court and Court of Appeals judges are all elected
  • They serve six year terms
  • If there is a vacancy the governor appoints a temporary replacement until the next general election
  • Oregon courts interpret state law and make sure it is consistent with federal law and the US Constitution