Where YOUR candidates stand… in their own words.
You will vote on ALL of these nonpartisan judicial races.
Court of Appeals
Intro to the Court of Appeals
Basic Info: Fourteen judges, two elected from each of the seven appellate districts, serve on the Court of Appeals and are divided into panels of three to review and decide cases, with the majority deciding the outcome.
Cases Handled: With a few exceptions, most cases appealed from Circuit Court go to the Court of Appeals. The case is not retried at the appeals level.
Instead, the original trial record is reviewed, with attorneys presenting the legal issues to the court for a decision.
Term: Court of Appeals judges serve eight-year terms.
Circuit Courts/Family Courts
Intro to Circuit Courts/Family Courts
Cases Handled: Can hear all types of cases unless the General Assembly has given exclusive jurisdiction of particular kinds of cases to another court to handle, such as District Court. Circuit Court hears civil matters involving more than $5,000, capital offenses and felonies, divorces, adoptions, termination of parental rights, land dispute title problems and contested probates of will. It also has the power to issue injunctions and writs of prohibition and mandamus to compel or prohibit acts, and to hear appeals from District Court and administrative agencies.
Term: Circuit judges serve eight-year terms.
Note: Family Court is a division of Circuit Court that hears only cases involving families and children.
Intro to District Courts
Cases Handled: Hears juvenile matters, city and county ordinances, traffic offenses, probates of will, felony preliminary hearings, civil cases involving $5,000 or less, guardianship, conservatorship, voluntary or involuntary commitment, child abuse and neglect, and domestic violence.
Term: District judges serve four-year terms.