Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the federal judiciary of the United States. Established pursuant to Article III of the U. S. Constitution in 1789, it has original jurisdiction over a narrow range of cases, including suits between two or more states and those involving ambassadors, it has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all federal court and state court cases that involve a point of federal constitutional or statutory law. The Court has the power of judicial review, the ability to invalidate a statute for violating a provision of the Constitution or an executive act for being unlawful. However, it may act only within the context of a case in an area of law over which it has jurisdiction; the court may decide cases having political overtones, but it has ruled that it does not have power to decide nonjusticiable political questions. Each year it agrees to hear about one hundred to one hundred fifty of the more than seven thousand cases that it is asked to review.
According to federal statute, the court consists of the Chief Justice of the United States and eight associate justices, all of whom are nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate. Once appointed, justices have lifetime tenure unless they resign, retire, or are removed from office; each justice has a single vote in deciding. When the chief justice is in the majority, he decides. In modern discourse, justices are categorized as having conservative, moderate, or liberal philosophies of law and of judicial interpretation. While a far greater number of cases in recent history have been decided unanimously, decisions in cases of the highest profile have come down to just one single vote, exemplifying the justices' alignment according to these categories; the Court meets in the Supreme Court Building in Washington, D. C, its law enforcement arm is the Supreme Court of the United States Police. It was while debating the division of powers between the legislative and executive departments that delegates to the 1787 Constitutional Convention established the parameters for the national judiciary.
Creating a "third branch" of government was a novel idea. Early on, some delegates argued that national laws could be enforced by state courts, while others, including James Madison, advocated for a national judicial authority consisting of various tribunals chosen by the national legislature, it was proposed that the judiciary should have a role in checking the executive power to veto or revise laws. In the end, the Framers compromised by sketching only a general outline of the judiciary, vesting federal judicial power in "one supreme Court, in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish", they delineated neither the exact powers and prerogatives of the Supreme Court nor the organization of the Template:Judicial branch as a whole. The 1st United States Congress provided the detailed organization of a federal judiciary through the Judiciary Act of 1789; the Supreme Court, the country's highest judicial tribunal, was to sit in the nation's Capital and would be composed of a chief justice and five associate justices.
The act divided the country into judicial districts, which were in turn organized into circuits. Justices were required to "ride circuit" and hold circuit court twice a year in their assigned judicial district. After signing the act into law, President George Washington nominated the following people to serve on the court: John Jay for chief justice and John Rutledge, William Cushing, Robert H. Harrison, James Wilson, John Blair Jr. as associate justices. All six were confirmed by the Senate on September 26, 1789. Harrison, declined to serve. In his place, Washington nominated James Iredell; the Supreme Court held its inaugural session from February 2 through February 10, 1790, at the Royal Exchange in New York City the U. S. capital. A second session was held there in August 1790; the earliest sessions of the court were devoted to organizational proceedings, as the first cases did not reach it until 1791. When the national capital moved to Philadelphia in 1790, the Supreme Court did so as well.
After meeting at Independence Hall, the Court established its chambers at City Hall. Under Chief Justices Jay and Ellsworth, the Court heard few cases; as the Court had only six members, every decision that it made by a majority was made by two-thirds. However, Congress has always allowed less than the court's full membership to make decisions, starting with a quorum of four justices in 1789; the court lacked a home of its own and had little prestige, a situation not helped by the era's highest-profile case, Chisholm v. Georgia, reversed within two years by the adoption of the Eleventh Amendment; the court's power and prestige grew during the Marshall Court. Under Marshall, the court established the power of judicial review over acts of Congress, including specifying itself as the supreme expositor of the Constitution and making several important constitutional rulings that gave shape and substance to the balance of power between the federal government and states; the Marshall Court ended the practice of each justice issuin
The Marshall Court refers to the Supreme Court of the United States from 1801 to 1835, when John Marshall served as the fourth Chief Justice of the United States. Marshall served as Chief Justice until his death; the Marshall Court played a major role in increasing the power of the judicial branch, as well as the power of the national government. The Marshall Court began in 1801, when President John Adams appointed Secretary of State John Marshall to replace the retiring Oliver Ellsworth. Marshall was nominated; the Marshall Court began with Marshall and five Associate Justices from the Ellsworth Court: William Cushing, William Paterson, Samuel Chase, Bushrod Washington, Alfred Moore. President Thomas Jefferson appointed William Johnson to replace Moore after Moore resigned in 1804. In 1807, Jefferson appointed two more justices, as Paterson died and Congress added a new seat for an Associate Justice. Jefferson nominated Henry Brockholst Livingston and Thomas Todd. President James Madison appointed Gabriel Duvall and Joseph Story in 1811 and 1812, replacing Cushing and Chase.
Madison had nominated Alexander Wolcott to replace Cushing. President James Monroe appointed Smith Thompson to succeed Livingston in 1823. President John Quincy Adams nominated Robert Trimble to replace Todd in 1826. Trimble died in 1828, Adams's nomination of John J. Crittenden was blocked by the Senate. Instead, Trimble was succeeded by John McLean, appointed by Andrew Jackson. In 1830, Jackson appointed Henry Baldwin to replace Washington, in 1834, Jackson appointed James Moore Wayne to replace Johnson. In 1835, Jackson nominated Roger Taney to succeed the retiring Duvall, but the nomination was denied by the Senate. Marshall died in 1835, Taney was instead nominated to replace Marshall as Chief Justice. Taney was confirmed in 1836. Marshall took office during the final months of John Adams's presidency, his appointment entrenched Federalist power within the judiciary; the Judiciary Act of 1801 established several new court positions that were filled by President Adams, but the act was repealed after the Democratic-Republicans took control of the government in the 1800 elections.
Regardless, Marshall was the last justice appointed by a president of the Federalist Party, the last justice appointed by a president, not a member of the Democratic-Republicans or Democratic Party until the 1840s. Although Democratic-Republicans had appointed a majority of the justices after 1811, Marshall's philosophy of a strong national government continued to guide the decisions of the Supreme Court until his death; the Democratic-Republicans attempted to impeach Justice Chase for overtly campaigning for John Adams's re-election impeding the independence of the Supreme Court, but the attempt failed after defections from within the party. Marshall's philosophy differed from that of some of his contemporaries outside the court, including Spencer Roane, who wrote a series of essays arguing that state courts should have the final say in most matters. Marshall's domination of the courts ensured that the federal government would retain strong powers, despite the political domination of Jeffersonians after 1800.
Marshall's opinions helped to reinforce the independent power of the Supreme Court as a check on Congress, laid some of the philosophical foundations of the Whig Party, which arose in the 1830s. Due to the Marshall Court's many accomplishments, President Adams referred to his appointment of Marshall as the "proudest act of his life." The Marshall Court issued several major rulings during its tenure, including: Marbury v. Madison: In a unanimous opinion written by Chief Justice Marshall, the court struck down Section 13 of the Judiciary Act of 1789, since it extended the court's original jurisdiction beyond what was established in Article III of the United States Constitution. In so doing, the court held that a law written by Congress was unconstitutional establishing the Supreme Court's power of judicial review. Although judicial review had a long history in American and British thought, Marbury was nonetheless important for establishing the Supreme Court's independence and ability to strike down laws of Congress that it deemed unconstitutional.
Fletcher v. Peck: In an opinion written by Chief Justice Marshall, the court held that the state of Georgia had violated the Contract Clause by voiding land grants in the Yazoo lands, influenced by bribery; the case marked the first time. Martin v. Hunter's Lessee: In an opinion written by Justice Story, the court held that it had held appellate power over state courts in regards to the United States Constitution and federal laws and treaties; the Supreme Court would again uphold this principle in Virginia. McCulloch v. Maryland: In a unanimous opinion written by Chief Justice Marshall, the court held that the state of Maryland had no power to tax a federal bank operating in Maryland. In so doing, the court upheld Congress's ability to establish the bank, taking a broad view of the Necessary and Proper Clause. Dartmouth College v. Woodward: In an opinion written by Chief Justice Marshall, the court invalidated New Hampshire's attempts to alter Dartmouth College's charter; the court held that the Contract Clause prot
Your Honour and Your Honor redirect here. For a list of English honorifics, see Style. For other uses, see Your Honour A judge is a person who presides over court proceedings, either alone or as a part of a panel of judges; the powers, method of appointment and training of judges vary across different jurisdictions. The judge is supposed to conduct the trial impartially and in an open court; the judge hears all the witnesses and any other evidence presented by the barristers of the case, assesses the credibility and arguments of the parties, issues a ruling on the matter at hand based on his or her interpretation of the law and his or her own personal judgment. In some jurisdictions, the judge's powers may be shared with a jury. In inquisitorial systems of criminal investigation, a judge might be an examining magistrate; the ultimate task of a judge is to settle a legal dispute in a final and public manner, thus affirm the rule of law. Judges exercise significant governmental power, they can order police, military or judicial officials to execute searches, imprisonments, distrainments, seizures and similar actions.
However, judges supervise that trial procedures are followed, in order to ensure consistency and impartiality and avoid arbitrariness. The powers of a judge are checked by higher courts such as supreme courts. Before the trial, a pre-trial investigation collecting the facts has been conducted by police officials, such as police officers and coroners, prosecutors or public procurators; the court has three main trained court officials: the judge, the prosecutor and the defence attorney. The role of a judge varies between legal systems. In an adversarial system, as in effect in the U. S. and England, the judge functions as an impartial referee ensuring correct procedure, while the prosecution and the defense present their case to a jury selected from common citizens. The main factfinder is the jury, the judge will finalize sentencing. In smaller cases judges can issue summary judgments without proceeding to a jury trial. In an inquisitorial system, as in effect in continental Europe, there is no jury and the main factfinder is the judge, who will do the presiding and sentencing on his own.
As such, the judge is expected to apply the law directly, as in the French expression Le juge est la bouche de la loi. Furthermore, in some system investigation may be conducted by the judge, functioning as an examining magistrate. Judges may work alone in smaller cases, but in criminal and other significant cases, they work in a panel. In some civil law systems, this panel may include lay judges. Unlike professional judges, lay judges are not trained, but unlike jurors, lay judges are volunteers and may be politically appointed. Judges are assisted by law clerks and notaries in legal cases and by bailiffs or similar with security. There are professional judges. A volunteer judge, such as an English magistrate, is not required to have legal training and is unpaid. Whereas, a professional judge is required to be educated. S. this requires a degree of Juris Doctor. Furthermore, significant professional experience is required. S. judges are appointed from experienced attorneys. Judges are appointed by the head of state.
In some U. S. jurisdictions, judges are elected in a political election. Impartiality is considered important for rule of law. Thus, in many jurisdictions judges may be appointed for life, so that they cannot be removed by the executive. However, in non-democratic systems, the appointment of judges may be politicized and they receive instructions on how to judge, may be removed if their conduct doesn't please the political leadership. Judges must be able to research and process extensive lengths of documents and other case material, understand complex cases and possess a thorough understanding of the law and legal procedure, which requires excellent skills in logical reasoning and decision-making. Excellent writing skills are a necessity, given the finality and authority of the documents written. Judges work with people all the time. Judges are required to have good moral character, i.e. there must be no history of crime. Professional judges enjoy a high salary, in the U. S. the median salary of judges is $101,690 per annum, federal judges earn $208,000–$267,000 per annum.
A variety of traditions have become associated with the occupation. Gavels are used by judges in many countries, to the point that the gavel has become a symbol of a judge. In many parts of the world, judges sit on an elevated platform during trials. American judges wear black robes. American judges have ceremonial gavels, although American judges have court deputies or bailiffs and contempt of court power as their main devices to maintain decorum in the courtroom. However, in some of the Western United States, like California, judges did not always wear robes and instead wore everyday clothing. Today, some members of state supreme courts, such as the Maryland Court of Appeals wear distinct dress. In Italy and Portugal, both judges and lawyers wear particular black robes. In some countries in the Commonwealth of Nations, judges wear wigs; the long wig associated with judges is now reserved for ceremonial occasions, although it was par
A court is any person or institution with authority to judge or adjudicate as a government institution, with the authority to adjudicate legal disputes between parties and carry out the administration of justice in civil and administrative matters in accordance with the rule of law. In both common law and civil law legal systems, courts are the central means for dispute resolution, it is understood that all people have an ability to bring their claims before a court; the rights of those accused of a crime include the right to present a defense before a court. The system of courts that interprets and applies the law is collectively known as the judiciary; the place where a court sits is known as a venue. The room where court proceedings occur is known as a courtroom, the building as a courthouse; the practical authority given to the court is known as its jurisdiction – the court's power to decide certain kinds of questions or petitions put to it. According to William Blackstone's Commentaries on the Laws of England, a court is constituted by a minimum of three parties: the actor or plaintiff, who complains of an injury done.
It is usual in the superior courts to have barristers, attorneys or counsel, as assistants, though courts consist of additional barristers, reporters, a jury. The term "the court" is used to refer to the presiding officer or officials one or more judges; the judge or panel of judges may be collectively referred to as "the bench". In the United States, other common law jurisdictions, the term "court" by law is used to describe the judge himself or herself. In the United States, the legal authority of a court to take action is based on personal jurisdiction over the parties to the litigation and subject-matter jurisdiction over the claims asserted; the word court comes from the French cour, an enclosed yard, which derives from the Latin form cortem, the accusative case of cohors, which again means an enclosed yard or the occupants of such a yard. The English word court is a cognate of the Latin word hortus from Ancient Greek χόρτος, both referring to an enclosed space; the meaning of a judicial assembly is first attested in the 12th century, derives from the earlier usage to designate a sovereign and his entourage, which met to adjudicate disputes in such an enclosed yard.
The verb "to court", meaning to win favor, derives from the same source since people traveled to the sovereign's court to win his favor. The word jurisdiction comes from juris and dictio. Jurisdiction is defined as the official authority to make legal decisions and judgements over an individual or materialistic item within a territory."Whether a given court has jurisdiction to preside over a given case" is a key question in any legal action. Three basic components of jurisdiction are personal jurisdiction over an individual, jurisdiction over the particular subject matter or thing and territorial jurisdiction. Jurisdiction over a person refers to the full authority over a person regardless on where they live, jurisdiction over a particular subject matter refers to the authority over the said subject of legal cases involved in a case, lastly, territorial jurisdiction is the authority over a person within an x amount of space. Other concepts of jurisdiction include general jurisdiction, exclusive jurisdiction, territorial jurisdiction, appellate jurisdiction, diversity jurisdiction.
Trial courts are courts. Sometimes termed "courts of first instance", trial courts have varying original jurisdiction. Trial courts may conduct trials with juries as the finders of fact or trials in which judges act as both finders of fact and finders of law. Juries are less common in court systems outside the Anglo-American common law tradition. Appellate courts are courts that hear appeals of trial courts; some courts, such as the Crown Court in England and Wales may have both trial and appellate jurisdictions. The two major legal traditions of the western world are the civil law courts and the common law courts; these two great legal traditions are similar, in that they are products of western culture although there are significant differences between the two traditions. Civil law courts are profoundly based upon Roman Law a civil body of law entitled "Corpus iuris civilis"; this theory of civil law was rediscovered around the end of the eleventh century and became a foundation for university legal education starting in Bologna and subsequently being taught throughout continental European Universities.
Civil law is ensconced in the French and German legal systems. Common law courts were established by English royal judges of the King's Council after the Norman Invasion of Britain in 1066; the royal judges created a body of law by combining local customs they were made aware of through traveling and visiting local jurisdictions. This common standard of law became known as "Common Law"; this legal tradition is practiced in the English and American l
English law is the common law legal system of England and Wales, comprising criminal law and civil law, each branch having its own courts and procedures. England's most authoritative law is statutory legislation, which comprises Acts of Parliament, regulations and by-laws. In the absence of any statutory law, the common law with its principle of stare decisis forms the residual source of law, based on judicial decisions and usage. Common law is made by sitting judges who apply both statutory law and established principles which are derived from the reasoning from earlier decisions. Equity is the other historic source of judge-made law. Common law can be repealed by Parliament. Not being a civil law system, English law has no comprehensive codification. However, most of its criminal law has been codified from its common law origins, in the interests both of certainty and of ease of prosecution. For the time being, murder remains a common law crime rather than a statutory offence. Although Scotland and Northern Ireland form part of the United Kingdom and share Westminster as a primary legislature, they have separate legal systems outside of English Law.
International treaties such as the European Union's Treaty of Rome or the Hague-Visby Rules have effect in English law only when adopted and ratified by Act of Parliament. Adopted treaties may be subsequently denounced by executive action.. Unless the denouncement or withdraw would affect rights enacted by parliament. In this case executive action cannot be used due to the doctrine of Parliamentary sovereignty; this principle was established in the case of Miller v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union in 2017. Criminal law is the law of punishment whereby the Crown prosecutes the accused. Civil law is concerned with tort, families, companies and so on. Civil law courts operate to provide a party who has an enforceable claim with a remedy such as damages or a declaration. In this context, civil law is the system of codified law, prevalent in Europe. Civil law is founded on the ideas of Roman Law. By contrast, English law is the archetypal common law jurisdiction, built upon case law.
In this context, common law means the judge-made law of the King's Bench. Equity is concerned with trusts and equitable remedies. Equity operates in accordance with the principles known as the "maxims of equity"; the reforming Judicature Acts of the 1880s amalgamated the courts into one Supreme Court of Judicature, directed to administer both law and equity. The neo-gothic Royal Courts of Justice in The Strand, were built shortly afterwards to celebrate these reforms. Public Law is the law governing relationships between the state. Private law encompasses relationships between other private entities. A remedy is "the means given by law for the recovery of a right, or of compensation for its infringement". Most remedies are available only from the court. Most civil actions claiming damages in the High Court were commenced by obtaining a writ issued in the Queen's name. After 1979, writs have required the parties to appear, writs are no longer issued in the name of the Crown. Now, after the Woolf Reforms of 1999 all civil actions other than those connected with insolvency, are commenced by the completion of a Claim Form as opposed to a Writ, Originating Application, or Summons.
In England, there is a hierarchy of sources, as follows: Legislation The case law rules of common law and equity, derived from precedent decisions Parliamentary conventions General Customs Books of authority Primary legislation in the UK may take the following forms: Acts of Parliament Acts of the Scottish Parliament Acts and Measures of the National Assembly for Wales Statutory Rules of the Northern Ireland AssemblyOrders in Council are a sui generis category of legislation. Secondary legislation in England includes: Statutory Instruments and Ministerial Orders Bye-laws of metropolitan boroughs, county councils, town councilsStatutes are cited in this fashion: "Short Title Year", e.g. Theft Act 1968; this became the usual way to refer to Acts from 1840 onwards. For example, the Pleading in English Act 1362 was referred to as 36 Edw. III c. 15, meaning "36th year of the reign of Edward III, chapter 15".. Common law is a term with historical origins in the legal system of England, it denotes, in the first place, the judge-made law that developed from the early Middle Ages as described in a work published at the end of the 19th century, The History of English Law before the Time of Edward I, in which Pollock and Maitland expanded the work of Coke and Blackstone.
The law developed in England's Court of Common Pleas and other common law courts, which became the law of the colonies settled under the crown of England or of the United Kingdom, in North America and elsewhere.