The Supreme Court of United States

The Supreme Court of United States

According to the constitution, the Supreme Court has both the appellate and original jurisdiction. This means that the Supreme Court can listen to original cases or appeal cases. For original cases, the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court is limited to disputes between the states or disputes among ambassadors and other high-ranking ministers.  Appellate jurisdiction means that the Supreme Court has the power to review, revise or overturn the decisions of the lower courts. Most of the cases appearing in the Supreme Court are appeals from the lower courts. Justices are allowed to pick around 8000 petitions per year.

Parties not satisfied with the decision of the lower court are allowed to petition with the Supreme Court. However, for the Supreme Court to consider a case, it must contain constitutional questions or a Disagreement between other federal courts or states. According to the rules of the Supreme Court, one of the nine Justices must vote to accept the case for it to proceed. In addition, five of the nine justices must vote to grant a stay.

After a case is accepted in the Supreme Court, the lawyers are given time to present their case and the justices later ask questions. Each side id given half an hour to present their case. After the oral arguments, the justices then meet in a closed session where they write their opinions.  The majority and minority decisions are released to the press.

I considered the Nichols v. United States case, which was decided by the Supreme Court on April 4 2016. The Supreme Court accepted the case because it contained constitutional questions. The issue was whether the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) apply when ones moves from a jurisdiction state to a non-jurisdiction state. In this case, the Supreme Court reversed the judgement of the Court of appeals.



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