Political Science Notes 3-12-2007 test 3

Political Science Notes 3-12-2007 test 3 - Class Notes...

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Class Notes State Court Organization 1) Courts of limited jurisdiction Texas municipal courts/ jurisprudence courts Minor cases Most state courts tend to look alike Courts of limited are called municipal or justice of the peace courts in towns and cities Created by law and local government bodies are given the power to operate these courts are appointed by the governing body and don’t need a law degree, each county will have at least 1 jurisprudence court in Texas by Texas constitution, are elected in partisan elections or by party labels judges serve a 4 year term and also not required to have a law degree(jurisprudence court) they hear minor cases (no money above $5,000 will be heard and only hear minor offenses), most are traffic offenses and petty theft Problems 1. They are not courts of record – the proceedings are not formally written down, no transcribing of case If a person wants to appeal as is subject to “de noro review”- retried again in its entirety, because there is no record of the prior court case Courts above don’t want to hear cases and usually dismiss cases that have been appealed 2. Underfunding Courts are responsible for raising their own money, usually in the form of raising fines 3. Lack of legal training- no law degrees required in most states North vs. Russell—the supreme court said that at the lowest level of courts lay judges are permitted(no law degree) and gave permission for their judges to have no legal training
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Class Notes 4. Lack of permanent residence no court room to meet, past in living room or in a garage jurisprudence and traffic courts have now been given to counties 5. Assembly line format they want to move the cases as quickly as possible, dispose of it quickly moved through quickly by many plea bargains trials take time 6. Case load anomaly significant differences heard by these courts some courts are extremely busy, some courts have few cases not equalized 2) Trial courts of general jurisdiction Criminal/civil cases Civil cases domestic, estate, torts Domestic disputes-divorces, child custody Estate- who gets what Torts- personal injury cases, automobile cases Each state decides how many general jurisdiction there will be Texas 432 courts with one judge overseeing them and are required to have law degrees, are elected in partisan elections for 4 year terms Drug cases are drowning the general jurisdiction courts due to their vast numbers They have a greater ability to listen to cases Traditional court rooms Most states allow these courts to listen to civil and criminal matters Listen to much more serious cases Sensational criminal cases are heard in these courts (Hannah Overton) Most cases involve non-violent cases Bulk of cases decided by these cases outnumber criminal cases 2 to 1 at this level
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Class Notes
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This note was uploaded on 04/13/2008 for the course POLS 2302 taught by Professor Aldredge during the Spring '08 term at Texas A&M.

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Political Science Notes 3-12-2007 test 3 - Class Notes...

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