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State Court Organization, 2011

NCJ Number
Date Published
November 2013
20 pages
Thomas Cohen, J.D., Ph.D.; Ron Malega, Ph.D.
Publication Series
This report presents 2011 data on the organization and operations of State trial and appellate courts and examines trends from 1980 through 2011.
Findings show that the organizational structure of the Nation's trial and appellate courts changed modestly from 1980 to 2011; six States added intermediate appellate courts between 1980 and 1998: Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, Utah, and Virginia. From 1980 to 2011, the number of States with more than three types of limited jurisdiction trial courts declined from 31 to 21; the number of States with one or no limited jurisdiction trial courts increased from 14 in 1980 to 21 in 2011. From 1980 to 2011, the number of State appellate court judges increased 69 percent, and the number of State trial judges increased 11percent. Other topics included in this report discuss court structure; distribution of judges by jurisdictional level; staffing, selection, and educational requirements of judges; the responsibilities of administrative offices of courts; court funding sources; and verdict requirements. Also provided are detailed State-level data on trial court administrators, trial court clerks, and the provisions for judicial education. Tables, figures, and appendixes

Date Created: November 26, 2013