North Carolina Court System


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Presentation about the court system in NC and some of the people involved in the justice system

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North Carolina Court System

  1. 1. NC State Judiciary For Use with Chapter 13.3
  2. 2. The NC Supreme Court NC Court of Appeals Superior Court District Court
  3. 3. The NC Supreme Court NC Court of Appeals Superior Court District Court
  4. 4. District Court Original Jurisdiction • judge makes decisions, no jury • juvenile law, divorce, family law, mental hospitalization commitments, traffic violations, civil cases involving less than $10,000, initial hearings in felonies
  5. 5. Superior Court District Court
  6. 6. Superior Court Original Jurisdiction • jury trial • felonies, civil cases involving more than $10,000, people wanting a jury trial in a misdemeanor from a guilty verdict in District Court
  7. 7. NC Court of Appeals Superior Court
  8. 8. NC Court of Appeals Appellate Jurisdiction • All appeals go to the NC Supreme Court first • appeals from many NC government agencies, appeals from the District Courts, appeals from Superior Courts unless they involve the death penalty • Appeals rejected by the NC Supreme Court
  9. 9. The NC Supreme Court NC Court of Appeals
  10. 10. The NC Supreme Court Appellate Jurisdiction • appeals from Superior Courts that involve the death penalty, cases regarding questions of the NC constitutional Important: cases that bring US Constitutional issues into question can be further appealed to the Federal Court System, either the US Circuit Court of Appeals or directly to the US Supreme Court.
  11. 11. People of the Courts  Clerk of Superior Court 1. establishes the validity of wills 2. conducts the sale of properties in foreclosure (when people cannot pay their debts) 3. administers the estates of the deceased 4. oversees the adoption of orphans and foster children 5. maintains all court records 6. responsible for the safe handling of all the fines and other money collected by court order
  12. 12. People of the Courts  Magistrates 1. issue search warrants and arrest warrants 2. hold pretrial hearings for those arrested and determine bail 3. may accept some guilty pleas and try some misdemeanor cases 4. try “small claims” cases (where less than $4,000 is in question)
  13. 13. People of the Courts  District Public Defender 1. full-time state employee whose represents indigent (extremely low-income) persons who are accused of a crime
  14. 14. People of the Courts  Chief Justice of NC Supreme Court 1. names special superior court judges 2. temporarily reassigns superior and district court judges 3. appoints the director of the administrative office of the courts