Английский язык. Учебное пособие. Бабушкин А.П - 6 стр.

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usually involve personal injury, property damage, debts, or some other conflict and
claims for the transfer of money from one side to the other. In civil cases, sometimes
neither side is seen as completely right and compromise financial settlements are
imposed. Many states have separate divisions of the same trial court that specialize in
civil or criminal cases.
Trial courts are divided into two groups: those with general and those with
limited jurisdiction. Limited jurisdiction
means that the particular court may hear
only certain narrowly defined categories of cases. Many states, for example, have
specialized trial courts that hear only traffic violations cases (Traffic Court) or
divorce and child custody cases (Family Court), or cases involving youthful criminal
offenders (Juvenile Court), or small amounts of money (Small Claim-Courts), etc.
Although the states are increasingly inclined to reduce the number and variety of
these courts, some states may have ten or more of these kinds of court. The federal
government also has several trial courts of limited jurisdiction. They include the
Court of Claims, which generally hears disputes between business contractors and the
U.S. government. Court of International Trade (formerly Customs Court), which
settles disputes over duties levied on imports, a Tax Court, which hears disputes
regarding payment of federal income taxes.
Trial courts of
general jurisdiction
have broader authority to hear a large
variety of cases. Any dispute involving more than a specific amount of money (for
example, more than a $750 to $1500 jurisdiction limit in many state small claims
courts) may be heard by a state trial court of general jurisdiction. Most criminal cases
involving serious crimes also are heard by these courts. The particular name and the
authority of these courts vary among the states, but their common characteristic is
their authority to hear a large variety of more significant cases. The federal district
courts may hear federally related cases that do not fall within the authority of one of
the specialized federal courts.
TABLE 1
THE STRUCTURE OF AMERICAN COURTS
Federal courts State courts
Highest appellate courts
U.S. Supreme Court State Supreme Court
Intermediate courts of appeals
Court of Appeals
Superior Court, District or
Circuit Court of Appeals, etc.
(found in about two-thirds of the states)
Trial courts of general jurisdiction
District Court District Court, Circuit Court,
Court of Common Pleas, etc