Federal Courts and One Type of Case
In the United States, there are two main types of courts: federal and state. Both have their own procedures and jurisdiction. However, there are cases that may be heard in both of them. These cases include disputes between citizens of different states, criminal or civil actions, and contract cases.
Federal court jurisdiction generally includes cases that relate to the United States Constitution. Some federal courts also have jurisdiction to hear cases involving issues of state law or constitutionality.
Federal court jurisdiction can be limited, however. It depends on the type of case that is brought. When a party brings a case to a federal court, he or she must first allege that the action complies with the U.S. Constitution. If the plaintiff does not meet this requirement, he or she will not be able to bring the action to the court.
There are also specialized courts of limited subject-matter jurisdiction. This includes juvenile courts and small claims courts.
Federal courts can also have "original jurisdiction," which means that they have direct jurisdiction over the case. This type of case is usually brought to the Supreme Court.
The highest level of the United States' court system is the Supreme Court. As such, this is the final level of appeal. A case that does not reach the Supreme Court will be sent to the circuit courts, which are the lower levels.
Federal court decisions can affect many people. Cases that are contested in both state and federal courts are often discussed in the news media. They may involve national terrorism or civil rights issues.