Court System Structure 1 I am located in Tennessee so looking at the state of Tennessee’s Court system I would refer to a pyramid. Therefore, atop the pyramid you would have the state Supreme Court that has five judges, a chief justice and four associate justices. These judges only hear the appeals of decisions made by lower courts and decide whether the decision (verdict) violated and of the rights, we are guaranteed under state and federal constitutions. The next layer of the Tennessee court pyramid includes the court of appeals and the court of criminal appeals. Each of the courts has 12 judges. Like the state Supreme Court, these courts only deal with appeals from the lower courts and do not hear from witnesses. The criminal cases that need appealed are appealed in the criminal court of appeals and all other cases are appealed in the other court of appeals. When either of the courts makes a decision, or ruling, it often winds up being appealed again - this time to the Supreme Court. Unlike the Supreme Court, the members of these courts do not sit all together (known
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Supreme Court of the United States, State supreme court, Probate Courts