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Federal Court

If a dispute involves a federal law issue or residents of different states, the matter may be brought into federal court. The state courts serve citizens of a state in resolving disputes between them. They handle all kinds of actions such as criminal, civil, family law and probate matters. They enforce state laws.This dual court system was established when we were a new country as state affiliations were so strong it was believed that a person from one state would not get a fair trial in another state. Both federal and state laws govern our behavior.Federal laws usually involve matters affecting the country as a whole or the relationships between states. State laws usually affect more regional and local issues. For that reason, the majority of civil and criminal cases are handled at the state court level.

Federal courts are sometimes referred to as Article III courts, as the judicial authority of these courts was established in Article III of the Constitution. The Constitution is the supreme law of the United States, so no state or state court can establish a law that contravenes it. That is why the U.S. Supreme can hear cases that began in federal court or in state court depending on the matter being disputed.

Unlike state court judges, federal judges are not elected. They are nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. They serve for life, barring a congressional impeachment.

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