Ch 107: NMTA Social Science: The U.S. Court System

About This Chapter

This chapter examines the U.S. court system to help prepare you for the NMTA Social Science exam. You'll get to refresh your memory on the federal and state court systems and court jurisdictions with our brief video lessons.

NMTA Social Science: The U.S. Court System - Chapter Summary

Verify your grasp on jurisdiction over property, court functions and different court levels while you're checking out the content in this chapter. You'll get to review these topics that may surface on the NMTA Social Science exam:

  • The three levels of the federal court system
  • Trial, appellate and Supreme Court functions
  • Original and appellate jurisdiction
  • The structure of the state court system
  • Subject matter jurisdiction
  • Long arm statute and the minimum contact rule
  • Types of courtroom participants

You can conveniently watch the video lessons on these major topics on your computer or handheld device. When you finish reviewing a video and the corresponding transcript you can take a quick self-assessment quiz within the chapter.

Objectives of the NMTA Social Science: The U.S. Court System Chapter

The NMTA Social Science test determines if your knowledge reflects the needed qualifications for teacher licensure in New Mexico. This chapter refreshes your memory on issues pertaining to the Government content domain on the test. All of the multiple-choice questions in this content domain add up to roughly 19% of your test score.

10 Lessons in Chapter 107: NMTA Social Science: The U.S. Court System
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Court System: Trial, Appellate & Supreme Court

1. The Court System: Trial, Appellate & Supreme Court

There are three separate levels of courts in our legal system, each serving a different function. Trial courts settle disputes as the first court of instance, appellate courts review cases moved up from trial courts and supreme courts hear cases of national importance or those appealed in the court of appeals.

The 3 Levels of the Federal Court System: Structure and Organization

2. The 3 Levels of the Federal Court System: Structure and Organization

The federal court system has three main levels: U.S. District Court, U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. Each level of court serves a different legal function for both civil and criminal cases.

Overview of the US Supreme Court

3. Overview of the US Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court justices reside over cases involving original jurisdiction under certain circumstances and appellate jurisdiction when a decision from a lower court involving constitutional law is at issue. Appellate cases require a writ of certiorari requesting permission to address this court.

State Court System: Structure & Overview

4. State Court System: Structure & Overview

There is no uniform structure to the State Court System. Each state has its own system but most states operate similarly to the Federal Court System in that there are several levels of courts including trial courts, intermediate appellate courts and supreme courts.

Long Arm Statute: Definition & Example

5. Long Arm Statute: Definition & Example

Long-arm statute refers to the jurisdiction a court has over out-of-state defendant corporations. International Shoe v. State of Washington was a landmark case that set precedent for establishing the right for government to use the long-arm statute to bring an action against a defendant corporation.

Court Functions: Original and Appellate Jurisdiction

6. Court Functions: Original and Appellate Jurisdiction

Courts exercise two types of jurisdiction over cases: original jurisdiction and appellate jurisdiction for cases previously heard in a lower court. Judges have the option, when hearing an appeals case, to reverse or remand a decision based on a violation of law like abuse of discretion.

Subject Matter Jurisdiction: Federal, State and Concurrent

7. Subject Matter Jurisdiction: Federal, State and Concurrent

One of the ways a court determines whether a case will be heard is based on subject matter jurisdiction. We will explore several factors that determine subject matter jurisdiction in state and federal courts, including concurrent subject matter jurisdiction.

Jurisdiction over Property: Definition & Types

8. Jurisdiction over Property: Definition & Types

In rem and quasi in rem jurisdiction give a court power over property. The court's power over the property can be used as leverage or as a means of satisfying a civil action against a defendant. The conditions that are required determine the court's ability to exercise both types of jurisdiction of property.

What is the Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court?

9. What is the Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court?

The U.S. Supreme Court exercises a right to preside over specific cases and is considered the court of original jurisdiction based on subject-matter jurisdiction. It is considered an appellate court for cases involving constitutional law under certain circumstances.

Courtroom Participants: Professional & Non-Professional Members

10. Courtroom Participants: Professional & Non-Professional Members

Learn the roles of the many different people present at a trial who may be part of the courtroom work group. Find out who is considered a professional participant and who are known as the outsiders.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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Other Chapters

Other chapters within the NMTA Social Science (303): Practice & Study Guide course

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