When a party appeals a case to a higher court it is not a do over Instead a

When a party appeals a case to a higher court it is

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lawsuit are dissatisfied with how a trial court handled a case, they can take an appeal here. When a party appeals a case to a higher court, it is not a do over. Instead, a panel of judges reviews the case for errors. In the federal system, courts on this level are called U.S. Courts of Appeal or circuit courts.At the top of the pyramid is a Supreme Court(some states actually have two, one for civil and one for criminal cases). If a party is unhappy with an intermediate court's actions, it can ask a supreme court to give a final review to the case. But in most situations, there is no automatic right to this last appeal.A party must instead ask a Supreme Court for a writ of certiorarito proceed, and the answer is almost always "no" because such courts are too busy to hear most of the appeals brought their way.Key Concept 4: JurisdictionPeople have disputes all the time, and most of them do not result in a lawsuit. Almost always, people work out their own problems. But, if people are sufficiently determined to take legal action, they eventually must file a lawsuit in a specific court. If the lawsuit is to get anywhere, then the court in which the lawsuit is filed must have jurisdiction. Jurisdiction refers to a court's power or authority over a case. In order to render an effective judgment in a case, a court must have two types of jurisdiction:1. subject matter jurisdiction over the type of case and 2. personal jurisdiction over the defendant.Subject Matter jurisdictionSubject matter jurisdiction refers to a court's power to hear a particular type or category of case.Some courts have been created to decide only one particular kind of case. If a plaintiff filed a breach of contract lawsuit in a tax court, for example, there would be a subject matter jurisdictionproblem. An important idea here is related to the material in the last key concept on court systems. Most trials happen in state courts. Because every state maintains a court system, there are many more state courts than federal courts. In fact, the federal courts only have subject matter jurisdiction over two major types of lawsuits.First, thefederal courts handle federal question cases. In these lawsuits, plaintiffs base their claims on federal law. If plaintiffs believe they should win their lawsuit because of a federal statute (such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964) or because of a provision in the U.S. Constitution (such as the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment), then they have a federal question case. Second, the federal courts hear diversity of citizenship cases.In these lawsuits,plaintiffs and defendants live in different states and the plaintiff seeks at least $75,000.Rules can get tricky when multiple plaintiffs and defendants are involved, or when corporations are involved, so pay attention to the rules in the assigned reading.The Standard Fire caseillustrates how subject matter jurisdiction can sometimes turn into a major controversy. State courts also must have subject matter jurisdiction, of course. But while federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction (limited to the types of cases the Constitution saysthey can hear), state courts are courts of general jurisdiction and have much broader subject
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matter jurisdiction. State courts can even entertain federal question and diversity cases, with
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  • Spring '08
  • BREDESON
  • Law, Supreme Court of the United States, Appellate court

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