Chapter Overview

Comparing one state court to another is like comparing apples to oranges in some respects. Some state court systems are extremely complex, whereas others are rather simple in their structure. The organization of state and local courts tends to reflect two major influences: (1) the organizational model set by the federal courts; and (2) each state's judicial preferences as manifested in state constitutions and judiciary statutes. The increased influence of states' constitutions within their judicial system, particularly in regard to civil rights, is known as judicial federalism. As Chapter 5 noted, judicial federalism is at play when state courts address the state's constitutional claims first, and only consider federal constitutional claims when extant cases cannot be resolved solely on state grounds.  This chapter introduces you to state court systems, how courts operate, the various types of state courts, the various approaches to selecting judges, and the role of courts in sustainability.

Website Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy
Please send comments or suggestions about this Website to