BUS 115 Chap003 Judicial Process


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  • Judges in the federal system are appointed by the president with the consent of the Senate for lifelong terms.
    In contrast, most state court judges are elected by the people and serve for a set term of years. Discuss the pros and cons of electing
    and appointing judges.
  • Examples of courts with special jurisdiction are probate courts and courts of claims. Courts
    also exercise subject matter jurisdiction and personal jurisdiction. Subject matter jurisdiction
    is the court’s power to hear a particular type of case. Personal jurisdiction is the
    court’s authority over the parties to a lawsuit.
  • The Federal Circuit was established by Congress primarily to streamline and unify patent law.
    However, the Federal Circuit was also given the power to hear appeals in cases that entail government contracts,
    trademark disputes, federal workers, veterans’ benefits, and international trade.
  • Background Information
    Diversity jurisdiction allowing suits between citizens of different states was once regarded as highly necessary, for fear that the courts of a state would heavily favor its own citizens. Today’s mobility and the national scope of business affairs have eliminated this problem. With federal courts busy implementing broad social policy and because of a reluctance to expand the federal courts, there is some support for eliminating this type of diversity jurisdiction. Eliminating diversity jurisdiction would force such cases back into state courts.
  • Sometimes an appellate court will review the
    factual decisions made by the judge or the jury in lower courts. Such a review, however, only
    occurs when the appeals court determines that the decision made in the lower court was undeniably
    wrong, given the facts and evidence in the case. This determination relies on the clearly
    erroneous standard . Appellate courts also have the ability to determine whether the judge in
    the lower court has in some way misused his or her authority. This type of review is referred to
    as abuse of discretion .
  • Background Information
    When the Supreme Court was established, it was unclear whether it would have the power to declare laws
    unconstitutional. It wasn’t until Chief Justice John Marshall asserted his authority that the court assumed
    this role. During Marshall’s tenure (1801–1835), the Court overturned more than a dozen state statutes.
  • Certiorari is Latin for “to be informed of.”
  • Wisconsin v. Yoder reinforced a standard for judging state statutes that affect the free exercise of religion. That standard requires
    states to show a “compelling interest” in any law that impacts on religion. A “compelling interest” might be the preservation of human
    life or the protection of national security. A failure by the state to show such a compelling interest would render the statute unconstitutional.
    However, in 1990, the Supreme Court, in Employment Division, Department of Human Resources of Oregon v. Smith, altered
    the standard, stating that states would no longer be required to show a compelling interest to defend a statute that places an indirect
    burden on religion. Many people objected to this change, so in 1993, Congress passed the Religious Freedom Restoration
    Act, which reinstated the compelling state interest standard.
  • State Variations The Alaska Supreme Court consists of three justices. By contrast, the Colorado Supreme
    Court consists of not less than seven justices and can be increased to no more than nine members.
  • Cross-Cultural Notes In India, where 75 percent of the population lives in villages, small courts called panchayats handle minor civil and criminal matters. Composed of elected officials, the panchayats hear cases informally (attorneys are not allowed) and serve a role similar to that of the U.S. justice of the peace.
  • Terms Trial by jury originated with the Saxons. An accused person would be set free if a number of people would come forward
    and swear that the accused was innocent. These people were called juratores, meaning “sworn witnesses” in Latin.
  • One possible motion is a motion for dismissal of the case for failure to state a claim for which relief
    can be granted. Some states call this a demurrer . Other motions to dismiss may be based on
    the grounds that the court lacks subject matter jurisdiction, that the court lacks personal jurisdiction,
    or that the court cannot hear the case because the statute of limitations has passed.
  • In the answer, the defendant admits or denies the allegations in the complaint. The defendant’s answer can also include affirmative defenses.
    One affirmative defense is assumption of the risk.
  • This motion is filed when there is no genuine issue as to any material fact, and the party filing
    the motion is entitled by law to a favorable judgment. The motion cannot be filed without
    supporting legal arguments written out in a brief and accompanied by applicable supporting
  • Depositions are oral statements made out of court under oath by witnesses or parties to the action in response to questions from the opposing attorneys. The answers are recorded by a court stenographer and can be used for later reference.
    Interrogatories are written questions that must be answered in writing under oath by the opposite party. Interrogatories cannot be given to witnesses. Only plaintiffs and defendants can be required to answer interrogatories.
    Requests for real evidence ask a party to produce documents, records, accounts, correspondence,
    photographs, or other tangible evidence. The request may also seek permission to inspect land.
    Requests for physical or mental examination ask a party to undergo a physical or a mental examination. Such requests can be made only if the physical or the mental condition of the party is in controversy; it must be a central concern to the lawsuit.
    Requests for admissions are made to secure a statement from a party that a particular fact is true or that a document or set of documents is genuine. An admission eliminates the need to demonstrate the truthfulness of the fact or the genuineness of the documents at trial.
  • Related Cases After losing money due to an accounting firm’s errors, a branch of the Catholic Church sued to regain the money. During voir dire, the judge refused to let the accounting firm ask if prospective jurors were Catholics, but he allowed them to ask if any had given money to this church. The court reasoned that all Catholics would not be biased, only prospective jurors who had lost money.
    Passion v. Touche, Ross & Co., 636 N.E.2d 503.
  • The plaintiff’s attorney calls witnesses and immediately subjects those witnesses to direct examination
    Direct examination is designed to present the facts that will support the plaintiff’s version of those facts. Opposing attorneys then have the chance to challenge the truthfulness of each piece of evidence presented. In this process of cross-examination , the witnesses answer questions of the defense attorney.
  • A verdict is a finding of fact. The verdict may be limited to the question of liability, or it can be extended
    to include the issue of damages. Liability means that the defendant is held legally
    responsible for his or her actions. The term damages refers to the money recovered by
    the plaintiff for the injury or loss caused by the defendant.
  • Generally, an appeal is filed by the party that lost the case in the trial court. However, it is also possible that the
    party that prevailed at trial may wish to file an appeal. This step is referred to as a cross appeal
  • Execution of the judgment also may be issued against any income due to the loser, such as wages, salaries, or dividends.
    This process is known as execution against income, or garnishment, and the proceedings
    are known as garnishee proceedings. Checking accounts are also subject to garnishment.
  • Background Information
    Miranda v. Arizona established a criminal defendant’s right to be informed of his or her rights. The U.S. Supreme Court has held that the protection of the public may outweigh the defendant’s rights to be informed. consequently, statements may be admissible at trial even if the defendant was not informed of his rights, as long as those statements were taken to protect the public. Under Title II of the Omnibus Crime Control Act, a freely given confession is admissible in federal court, as long as the trial judge is convinced that the confession was genuinely voluntary.
  • Background Information
    A defendant has the right to a jury trial but may waive, or give up, this right and have the judge decide the facts.
  • The correct answer is “C” – appellate jurisdiction. See next slide.
  • The correct answer is “D”
  • The correct answer is “C”
  • The correct answer is “A” – discovery. See next slide.
  • The correct answer is “A” – discovery. See next slide.
  • The correct answer is “D” – preliminary hearing. See next slide
  • The correct answer is “A” – Supreme Court. See next slide.
  • The correct answer is “D” – writ of certiorari. See next slide.
  • BUS 115 Chap003 Judicial Process

    1. 1. Chapter 3 The Judicial Process 3-1
    2. 2. Learning Objectives 1. Explain the fundamental nature of American courts 2. Determine when a case can be brought in federal court 3. Recognize those cases that can be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court 4. Identify the structure of most court systems 5. Define civil litigation 3-2
    3. 3. Learning Objectives 6. 7. 8. 9. List the most common discovery techniques Detail the nature of an appeal Determine the extent of cyberjurisdiction Explain the nature of electronically stored information (ESI) 10. Describe the steps in a criminal prosecution 3-3
    4. 4. The Court System • Courts – judicial tribunals that meet in a regular place and apply the law in an attempt to settle disputes by weighing the arguments presented by advocates for each party. 3-4
    5. 5. The Federal Court System • Consists of: – Supreme Court – Courts of appeal – Federal district courts • Authorized by Article III of the U.S. Constitution: “The Judicial Power of the United States shall be vested in one supreme court, and in such inferior courts as Congress may from time to time ordain and establish.” 3-5
    6. 6. Court Jurisdiction • Jurisdiction - Authority of a court to hear and decide cases – Original/Appellate – General/Special – Subject matter – Personal 3-6
    7. 7. Court Jurisdiction • Original Jurisdiction – Court has the authority to hear a case when it is first brought to court • Appellate Jurisdiction – Those courts that have the power to review a case for errors • Plenary review – courts with appellate jurisdiction will be empowered to determine whether the lower courts have made errors of law 3-7
    8. 8. Court Jurisdiction • General Jurisdiction – The power to hear any type of case • Special Jurisdiction – The power to hear only certain types of cases (business, family, drug, traffic, bankruptcy, etc.) 3-8
    9. 9. Court Jurisdiction • Subject Matter Jurisdiction – Power to hear a particular type of case • Personal Jurisdiction – Authority over the parties involved in a lawsuit 3-9
    10. 10. 3-10
    11. 11. Court Jurisdiction • Federal district courts have subject matter jurisdiction over cases that pertain to a federal question • Federal question – involves: – U.S. Constitution – a federal statute or statutes – a treaty • Removal – process of moving a case from a state to U.S. District Court 3-11
    12. 12. Diversity Diversity cases include lawsuits that are: (1) between citizens of different states (2) between citizens of a state or different states and citizens of a foreign nation (3) between citizens of a state and a foreign government as the plaintiff 3-12
    13. 13. Diversity • Must involve an amount over $75,000 • An individual can only sue a foreign state if that state supports terrorism and the request is for damages related to that support • If one defendant is a member of the same state as the plaintiff, diversity is not established 3-13
    14. 14. U.S. Court of Appeals • The judges at the appellate level must be guided by the standard of review that is appropriate to each case • The standard of review tells the appellate- level judges the degree to which they must remain faithful to the decision of the lower court judge 3-14
    15. 15. Standards of Review • Plenary (de novo) – full review • Clearly Erroneous – given the facts and evidence, decision was wrong • Abuse of Discretion – judge somehow misused his/her authority • Arbitrary and Capricious – finding has no reasonable basis 3-15
    16. 16. The U.S. Supreme Court • Supreme Court – composed of a chief justice and eight associate justices – the court of final jurisdiction in all cases appealed from the lower federal courts and in cases coming from state supreme courts – has original jurisdiction in cases affecting ambassadors or other public ministers and consuls and in cases in which a state is a party 3-16
    17. 17. The U.S. Supreme Court • Writ of certiorari – an order from the Supreme Court to a lower court to deliver its records to the U.S. Supreme Court for review. 3-17
    18. 18. State Court Systems • The state trial courts – also known as general jurisdiction courts – have the power to hear any type of case – often called superior courts, circuit courts, or courts of common pleas Gaston County Courts 3-18
    19. 19. Figure 3-2 – Federal and State Courts Systems Federal and State Courts Systems 3-19
    20. 20. Civil Procedure • Civil litigation – Individual/organization/corporation vs. Individual/organization/corporation – Bringing a case to court to enforce a right – Objective is usually to obtain money to compensate the victim 3-20
    21. 21. Civil Procedure • Plaintiff – person who begins the lawsuit by filing a complaint in the appropriate trial court of general jurisdiction • Defendant – person against whom the lawsuit has been brought and from whom a recovery is sought 3-21
    22. 22. Civil Procedure 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Commencement of the Action Service of Process Pre-Answer Stage Answer Pretrial Stage The Civil Trial Appeal Execution of Judgment 3-22
    23. 23. Commencement of the Action • The complaint - sets forth: – The names of the parties to the lawsuit, identifying them as plaintiffs or defendants – The facts in the case from the plaintiff’s perspective – The alleged legal violations by the defendant – The injuries that the plaintiff suffered – The plaintiff’s request for relief 3-23
    24. 24. Civil Procedure • A class action – One (or a small number) of the potential plaintiffs file a lawsuit on behalf of all members of the entire class • who share a similar injury 3-24
    25. 25. Civil Procedure The courts will permit a class action lawsuit provided that (1) it is not feasible for the members of the group to bring the suit on their own, (2) the members of the group share common questions of law that can be tried together, and (3) The class action approach is far better than forcing the plaintiffs to file separate actions 3-25
    26. 26. Civil Procedure • Forum shopping – occurs when a plaintiff searches for a jurisdiction with law that is favorable to its case, and then files the case in that jurisdiction • Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) 2005 – Includes innovations designed to limit forum shopping and counteract other abuses associated with class actions 3-26
    27. 27. Service of Process • Service of process – giving the summons and the complaint to the defendant • The summons – names the court of jurisdiction, describes the nature of the action, and demands that the defendant answer the complaint within a specified period of time (usually 20-30 days) 3-27
    28. 28. Pre-Answer Stage • Pre-answer stage – The time between service and the answer – Defendant takes time to examine nature of the claim – May file one or more pre-answer motions • Motion – A request for the court to rule on a particular issue. 3-28
    29. 29. Answer • Answer – The defendant’s official response to the complaint • Can include: – Affirmative defense – Counter-claim – Cross-claim – Third-party complaint 3-29
    30. 30. Answer (cont.) • Affirmative defense – Defendant shouldn’t be held liable even if the plaintiff proves all the facts in the complaint • Counterclaim – Claim that a defendant has against a plaintiff • Cross-claim – Claim filed by a defendant against another defendant in the same case • Third-party complaint – Complaint filed by the defendant against a third party not yet named in the lawsuit 3-30
    31. 31. The Pretrial Stage • While awaiting trial, several activities can be carried out, including: – Pretrial Conference – Pretrial Motions – Discovery 3-31
    32. 32. Pretrial Stage A pretrial conference – meeting of the parties to a case prior to the trial. Usually has two purposes: 1. To discuss the possibility of settling the case without the need for a trial 2. To decide on the details involved in bringing the case to trial 3-32
    33. 33. Pretrial Stage • Pretrial Motions – Summary judgment motion - a motion that asks the court for an immediate judgment for the party filing the motion 3-33
    34. 34. Pretrial Stage • Discovery – Searching for information relevant to the case • • • • • Depositions – oral statements Interrogatories – written questions Requests for real evidence Request for physical or mental examination Requests for admissions 3-34
    35. 35. The Civil Trial • Jury selection (voir dire) – The lawyers for both parties question prospective jurors to determine whether they will be allowed to sit on the jury 3-35
    36. 36. The Civil Trial • • • • • • • Opening Statements The Plaintiff’s Case in Chief The Defendant’s Case in Chief The Rebuttal and the Surrebuttal Closing Statements Jury Instructions Verdict and Judgment 3-36
    37. 37. The Civil Trial • The Plaintiff’s/Defendant’s Case in Chief – Direct examination – Cross-examination • Rebuttal – Discrediting evidence of opposition and reestablishing credibility of his/her own 3-37
    38. 38. The Civil Trial • Closing Statements – Each attorney recaps their case, emphasizing the evidence/testimony they feel best supports the case • Jury Instructions – Given to the jury by the judge, stating what rules must be applied when deciding 3-38
    39. 39. The Civil Trial • Verdict and Judgment – Verdict - finding of fact – Liability – legal responsibility – Damages – money recovered/rewarded – Equitable remedy – action/inaction other than money • Specific performance • Injunction 3-39
    40. 40. The Civil Trial • Appeal – The referral of a case to a higher court for review – To be successful, must show that some legal error occurred • Cross appeal – Appeal filed by the prevailing party 3-40
    41. 41. The Civil Trial Execution of the judgment • Writ of execution – If the judgment is not paid, the court will order the loser’s property to be sold by the sheriff to satisfy the judgment 3-41
    42. 42. Cyberprocedure • Cyberjurisdiction – the power of the court to hear a case based on Internet related transactions. – also called electronic jurisdiction and e-jurisdiction 3-42
    43. 43. Cyberprocedure • Cyberfiling – electronic filing or e-filing • More cost effective and efficient than paper filing • Disadvantages – Courts must maintain dual filing system to accommodate “cyber-challenged” firms – Attorneys must learn rules for every court in which they do business 3-43
    44. 44. Cyberdiscovery • The part of the litigation process that has been affected the most by the cyber-revolution is the discovery process. • Due to the actual changes caused by the cyberrevolution itself and extensive changes made in the rules of discovery by the federal courts to accommodate the revolution 3-44
    45. 45. Criminal Procedure • Objectives are to protect society and punish the wrongdoer • Result is a fine or imprisonment 3-45
    46. 46. Criminal Procedure The steps in a criminal prosecution include the following: • Arrest and initial appearance • Preliminary hearing • Formal charges • Arraignment • Trial 3-46
    47. 47. Criminal Procedure • Preliminary hearing – Judge decides whether probable cause exists to continue holding the defendant for the crime 3-47
    48. 48. Criminal Procedure • Formal charges – Indictment - set of formal charges against a defendant issued by a grand jury – Information - set of formal charges against a defendant drawn up and issued by the prosecutor or district attorney 3-48
    49. 49. Criminal Procedure • Arraignment – A formal court proceeding, during which the defendant, after hearing the indictment or information read, pleads either guilty or not guilty 3-49
    50. 50. Criminal Trial • Burden of proof – Criminal trial – beyond a reasonable doubt – Civil trial – preponderance of evidence 3-50
    51. 51. Question? Which jurisdiction gives courts the power to review a case for errors? A. General jurisdiction B. Original jurisdiction C. Appellate jurisdiction D. Constable jurisdiction 3-51
    52. 52. Question? Which jurisdiction gives courts the power hear certain types of cases? A. Personal jurisdiction B. Supreme jurisdiction C. Appellate jurisdiction D. Subject Matter jurisdiction 3-52
    53. 53. Question? What is the burden of proof in a criminal trial? A.Beyond a shadow of a doubt B.A preponderance of the evidence C.Beyond a reasonable doubt D.Based on a simple majority vote 3-53
    54. 54. Question? What is the process by which the parties to a civil action search for information that is relevant to the case? A. Discovery B. Subpoena C. Writ of intervention D. Interrogation 3-54
    55. 55. Question? What is it called when representative party files a lawsuit on behalf of all members of a group of plaintiffs who share a single, similar injury A.Jury Trial B.Class Action C.Writ of Intervention D.Writ of Certiorari 3-55
    56. 56. Question? The court procedure during which the judge decides whether probable cause exists to continue holding the defendant for the crime is called the ___________. A. Arraignment B. Indictment C. Grand jury D. Preliminary hearing 3-56
    57. 57. Question? Which court has the original jurisdiction in cases affecting ambassadors ? A. Supreme Court B. State Circuit Court C. Federal District Court D. D.C. Appeals Court 3-57
    58. 58. Question? What is an order from the Supreme Court to a lower court to deliver its records to the U.S. Supreme Court for review? A. Writ B. Records subpoena C. Writ of subpoena D. Writ of certiorari 3-58