The Federal Courts System

Module 6 Lesson 1 Mastery Assignment

Hannah Brown

In all Federal Courts, there will always be a Federal courts judge. They are appointed by the president with Senate approval; this is stated in the Constitution. They serve for life terms which means as long as they want. Each district court has magistrate judges who do much of the judge’s routine work. They hear preliminary evidence and determine whether the case should go to trial.

The Federal Court System starts at the district courts, this means that all cases start here. District court has original jurisdiction. This means that the courts have the authority to hear the case for the first time.

The appeal courts are like the second level in the Federal Court System. The appeals court has an appellate jurisdiction. This means that courts have the authority to hear a case appealed from a lower court. These courts determine if the trail was fair and protected by the person’s rights. Each of the 12 U.S. courts of appeals covers a particular geographic area called a circuit. After listening to both parties of a case, there are three decisions the appeals court judges can issue after hearing a case; uphold, overturn or remand the case. Remand means to send it back to the lower court to be tried again.

Most appeal courts decisions are final and one appellate judge writes an opinion and this explains the legal thinking behind the courts decisions in the case. The opinions set a precedent or model for other judges to follow in making their own decisions on similar cases.

Every federal judicial district has a U.S. attorney or a government lawyer who prosecutes people accused of breaking federal laws also every federal judicial district has a U.S. Marshal. The Marshals are used to make arrest, collect fines, and take convicted people to prison and such.