Why a Circuit Court Judge Matters & What They Do

We often hear the term circuit court popping up in TV and news but only some of us are aware of what does it do and why they are for? Here is an overview of the circuit court, the judge in circuit court and what are their responsibilities and who appoint them.

It is nearly impossible for a single court to handle the cases that arise on a regular basis so, for the large countries like the US, there is a huge criminal justice system working to resolve the problems. These are the courts that meet within the same district they preside over in various places. Circuit’s courts are presided over by circuit a judge who imparts justice to matters that are somehow overseen and they travel around that district for this purpose. They have a different responsibility and they are held accountable for state local and federal cases as well. These courts are a limited version of jurisdiction courts.


A circuit judge must have a law degree, a complete undergraduate degree, and license to practice and must have passed the bar. Some states have their own eligibility criteria for circuit judges. In some states, only a person with 5 years of experience in law is eligible to stand in the election for circuit judge. There is no appointment and in the state election, they have to run for office. After being elected there is a six-year serve contract. Those judges who serve on the 13 federal circuit courts serve for life and are appointed by the president of the United States.


Circuit courts are of different types. No matter if its federal court or county court, they have got a few common things in them. They handle all sort of appeals.  Be it tax case to military or anything in between them. Every circuit court has a specialty which is to be focused while working. A case not yet decided by the lower court is not heard in circuit court. These courts are only available for plaintiffs, defendants or sometimes, the government to appeal another’s court decision.

Responsibilities of Circuit Judge

Since this is a court of appeals so the judge must be aware of the appeal process both in America in general or in their jurisdiction. There a number of ways to appeal a court’s decision to a judge must be capable to demonstrate the knowledge and understanding of various procedures that would arise. The judge must have a sound understanding and vast knowledge of the type of law followed in the court’s jurisdiction. To handle the workload they can make a team of an associate judge who can confer with other judge and can give an opinion in court during the cases. And the associate judge is eligible to deliver a verdict on any one case.

The court system is complicated in a country like America where over 300 million citizens are residing. Based on the necessity the courts are divided into small; jurisdiction. It is here where a large number of crucial cases are settled by incredible judges.