Is Our Current Appellate Court System the Best We Can Do?

May 5, 2014 § 7 Comments

Should we split our Court of Appeals between civil appeals and criminal appeals? That’s one question raised by Anderson at this link.

§ 7 Responses to Is Our Current Appellate Court System the Best We Can Do?

  • Bob Wolford says:

    Maybe look to other states of comparable size and growth rates and see how their appellate benches have evolved over time. I’m leaning toward criminal and civil appeals with cert to the Supremes.

  • I think Reggie has a good idea with a Court of Criminal Appeals and a Court of Civil Appeals.

  • thusbloggedanderson says:

    Tom Freeland in comments made the useful remark that a court of criminal appeals would likely be staffed by ex-prosecutors … another idea is a circuit/chancery appellate split.

    • thusbloggedanderson says:

      Following up with numbers from the 2012 report of the MSSC. Chancery courts “disposed of” 64,513 cases. Circuit courts “disposed of” 21,441 civil & 24,917 criminal cases. Leaving aside whether “a case” is truly comparable here (I will let the chancery & circuit judges answer that one!), and the roughness of # of dispositions as a measure for # of appeals, this does suggest a chancery/circuit appellate split would be a better rough way of halving the effort than a civil/criminal split.

      (Note: 1st 2 numbers not double-checked; 3d # taken from C.J. Waller’s intro to report, which however has over 120,000 chancery “dispositions” so something is wacky here.)

    • A distinct possiblity.

  • Yes. We should have a court of criminal appeals and a court of civil appeals with a Supreme Court above those two.

  • William Featherston says:

    If it would speed up the appellate process, I vote yes.

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