What is the definition of circuit court
In olden times, judges traveled from location to another within their jurisdictions, holding court in various places. Over time, they returned again and again to the same places, These regular routes came to be called circuits, and eventually the courts themselves became known as circuit courts. In more modern times, the judges are more likely to stay in one place, though some still travel a circuit. Despite the modern practices, the old names persist in many states. So, the definition of circuit is no longer particularly relevant. Think of the word as simply the name given a category of courts in some judicial systems. Generally, the circuit courts are courts of "general" jurisdiction, meaning they are the catch-all courts having authority over cases not having any other courts with "special" or specifically designated authority over them. Typically, circuit courts will try felony (or more serious) criminal cases, will have unlimited power to issue money judgments, and will have so-called "equity" powers (injunctions, divorces, performance orders, etc.). Interestingly, in the federal judiciary, where there are no courts of general jurisdiction, the intermediate appellate (appeal level) courts are organized in thirteen judicial circuits, each one taking in several of the 94 judicial districts with their trial level courts.
May 07, 2014 |