Chapter 2 Lesson

Chapter 2 Lesson - Chapter 2 Lesson Page 1 of 7 Chapter 2...

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Chapter 2 Lesson Chapter 2 Lesson Chapter 2 - The Legal System in the United States The State Court Systems Most state court systems are probably similar to Idaho's, which is the only one you are required to know. It might help you to first read the Chap. 2 handout entitled "Idaho Court System" before reading this section of Lesson 2. Also, re-familiarize yourself with the names of litigants (plaintiff, defendant, etc.). The diagram of the Idaho State Court system I usually put on the board in a live class looks something like this: Magistrate Court (trial only) > District Court (trial and appellate) > Court of Appeals (appellate only) > Supreme Court (appellate only) The magistrate court is the lowest court in Idaho. Magistrate courts hear misdemeanor criminal actions and civil actions involving $10,000 or less. Magistrate courts also preside over all divorces and probate matters. Juvenile, traffic, and small claims courts are part of the magistrate division. District courts hear appeals from the magistrate courts (appellate function). District courts OBJECTIVES: After completing this lesson, the required reading, and the assignments, learners will be able to: 1. Describe the organization of the Idaho and federal court systems. 2. Discuss the factors involved in deciding which court may hear and decide a case, including jurisdiction, venue, standing, and preemption. 3. List situations requiring professional legal advice. 4. Outline the issues to consider when choosing a lawyer, including the size and type of the firm, attorneys fees, and various attorney / client ethical issues. Page 1 of 7 Chapter 2 Lesson
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also hear original proceedings, such as felonies (criminal) and civil actions involving over $10,000 (trial function). When the Idaho Constitution was enacted, it created only the Idaho Supreme Court and provided that all appeals from district court go directly to the Supreme Court. The Idaho Legislature did not establish the Court of Appeals until the early 1980's. The constitution still requires that all appeals from district court go straight to the Idaho Supreme Court, even though the Idaho Court of Appeals is now the intermediate appellate court between those two levels. Therefore, when a case is appealed from district court, the appeal always goes to the Idaho Supreme Court, which then decides whether it or the Court of Appeals will hear the appeal. If an appeal is sent to the Idaho Court of Appeals, after it issues its decision, the losing party has three choices: 1. Accept the decision. 2. File a Petition for Reconsideration asking the Court of Appeals to reconsider its decision. 3. File a Petition for Review asking the Idaho Supreme Court to review the Court of Appeals' decision. Thus, cases reach the Idaho Supreme Court either straight from district court or in those
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Chapter 2 Lesson - Chapter 2 Lesson Page 1 of 7 Chapter 2...

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