Institute:Office of National Coordinator (ONC) Workforce Training Curriculum
Component:Introduction to Health Care and Public Health in the U.S.
Unit:Regulating Health Care
Lecture:Branches of Government and the Configuration of the U.S. Judicial System
Slide content:The Judicial System: Courts Trial court Hears evidence and hands down verdicts Can be federal, state, or local Appellate court Losing party can appeal Court usually does not hear new evidence Reviews case to determine if the law was properly applied to the facts as determined by the trial court 8
Slide notes:There are two kinds of courts within most legal systems: trial courts and appellate courts. The trial court hears evidence in a dispute, decides which party is telling the truth, and decides the outcome by determining how the law applies to the facts of the specific case. After the trial court makes its decision, the losing party has the right to appeal that decision to a higher court, known as an appellate court. An appeals court consists of a panel of judges. For example, a panel of three judges is common in the federal courts of appeals. In most cases, appellate judges do not hear any witnesses or consider any new evidence. The role of a court of appeals is to decide whether the trial court properly applied the law to the facts of the case. A court of appeals gives great weight to the determinations the trial court made about what evidence was reliable and which witnesses were telling the truth. In the federal system, the party who loses in a court of appeals may appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. However, the parties do not have an absolute right to further appeal. Each year, the Supreme Court accepts only a small portion of the cases filed by parties from the lower courts, and declines to hear the rest. 8