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Running head: COURTS AND THE LEGAL PROCESS

Courts and the Legal Process


Name
Institution

COURTS AND THE LEGAL PROCESS

Courts and the Legal Process


The legal system refers to the framework through which justice is administered by the use
of laws or statues. Courts represent the most important institutions in the process of criminal
justice. In any case, criminal and civil law are circumstantial in that they are applied in different
levels that include federal and state levels. These levels are called jurisdictions. Court
jurisdictions derive from differing powers attached to courts of different levels in pursuing cases
of varying magnitudes. The court system of the United States is divided into limited and general
jurisdiction courts. Limited jurisdiction courts procure special cases such as those of family
matters and bankruptcy. On the other hand, courts of general jurisdiction hear all kinds of cases
including probate, family, civil, and criminal cases. Many of the trial courts in the US are
examples of courts of general jurisdiction. An example is the Arizona Judicial department that
hears cases such as contracts law and tort cases. District and municipal courts are examples of
courts of limited jurisdiction. As a new judge in the Washington State court, a limited jurisdiction
court, estate, real property, and contract cases will form the biggest part of my caseload. Estate
and real property cases entail cases involving administration of fixed properties. On the other
hand, contractual cases involve resolving disputes arising in the management of contracts such as
in business.
When a defendant is dissatisfied with the ruling of a lower court, he or she is entitled to
appeal in a higher court. However, certain factors determine whether a defendant found guilty of
a crime can appeal in an appellate court. These include the nature of the case and the jurisdiction
of the higher or subsequent court. In a case in which Ariel Castro was convicted without doubt
that he had held three women captive for more than nine years, the State Court of Cleveland
refused his appeal and sentenced him for life imprisonment. At the top of the US federal

COURTS AND THE LEGAL PROCESS

judiciary is the United States Supreme Court. Under the Supreme Court are the US Court of
Appeals, which consists of the regional courts and the federal circuits. The US Tax Courts,
District Courts, and the Court of Federal Claims come after the appeal courts. The Small Cases
Division Courts makes the lowest level courts in the federal court system. The tax courts, district
courts, court of federal claims, and the small cases division make up the trial courts or courts of
original jurisdiction. All the upper courts make up the appellate courts. For a case to be heard in
the federal court, the requirements of 28 USC 1331 and 3 USC 2 must be met. Generally, the
case must have a federal ingredient. Such cases include Louisville & Nashville Co. v. Mottley of
1908 and Osborn v. Bank of the United States of 1824.