State and Federal Court Systems


Stateand Federal Court Systems

Subject matterjurisdiction refers to the court`s power to hear specific types ofcourt cases. In the state court systems, court statutes that createcourts set general boundaries on the specific subject matterjurisdiction (McSorley, 2003). The subject matter may be medicalmalpractice, criminal infringement, or the estate probation.

Personaljurisdiction refers to the power given to a court by differentparties in the case in question. Before the court exercising powerover a specific party, a country`s constitution demands that theparty in question must have specific minimum contacts within theforum that the state court sits (Casad et al., 2014). Personaljurisdiction is founded when people are involved with the currentstate litigation or are the state`s legal residents in which thefiled lawsuit is based.

In a federalcourt, requirements of personal jurisdiction are first based on thejurisdiction over the type of disputed legal parties and parties(Noonan, 2002). The requirements are founded on whether the person isinvolved with substantial connection over the state`s transactions inquestion, or when an individual is involved in lawsuit litigationsfiled over legal residents.

There are threedifferent types of personal jurisdiction. They include:

  • In Personam Jurisdiction is when a court that has personal jurisdiction can exercise powers over an individual with a particular defendant (Noonan, 2002). For example, when a person`s rights and interests are based substantially on his or her property like land, he or she may risk any action taken irrespective of the level of ownership. Here, the court has enough powers over the defendant in question and his or her acquired property.

  • In Rem Jurisdiction, a court has the power to adjudicate an individual`s rights on a specific property. But to exercise this jurisdiction, the item of property should be identified by the state`s physical boundaries (Casad et al., 2014). For example, this jurisdiction type specifically involves different actions taken based on the title to a property. It is when the court is asked to determine all the people`s rights to a property. In Rem Jurisdiction also applies to a case whereby a person just found a diamond ring, and has taken an action to find out who the owner of the ring.

  • Quasi-in-rem Jurisdiction is when a court has a quasi-in-rem jurisdiction, which means the power is determined regardless of individual`s ownership of a particular property controlled by the court (Casad et al., 2014). Here, the court can adjudicate different disputes instead of ownerships based on the defendant`s presence of his or her property in the debate. For example, the jurisdiction is commonly used when, especially when there is no case filed over the defendant`s unavailability from the state.

The two types of that are likely to be heard by the federal courtsare criminal and civil cases. In criminal cases, a person accused tohave committed a crime is charged based on the formality of theaccusation referred to as an indictment (McSorley, 2003). Thegovernment, therefore, prosecutes the actual case through theAttorney general`s office. It is not the responsibility of the victimto file the case. For example, the state arrest and prosecuteindividuals accused of laws` violation since the society sees it as aserious offense.

In a civil case, an entity or person calls the plaintiff and claimsthat an entity or individual has failed to handle a legal duty, whichis owed to the plaintiff. The defendant and plaintiff are regarded aslitigants or parties (McSorley, 2003). The plaintiff in such a casemay ask the state court to ask the defendant to make compensation orfulfill the duty. For example, a lumberyard and a carpenter may agreeto on the price and delivery of the wood. Failure to do so couldprompt the carpenter to sue the lumberyard for failure to deliver asagreed upon, and thus could ask for compensation for the damages.


Casad, R. C., Richman, W. M., &amp Cox, S. (2014). Jurisdictionin civil actions: Territorial basis and process limitations onjurisdiction of state and federal courts. The Hague: Kluwer LawInternational.

McSorley, J. F. (2003). A portable guide to federal conspiracylaw: Tactics and strategies for criminal and civil cases.Chicago: Criminal Justice Section, American Bar Association.

Noonan, J. T. (2002). Narrowing the nation`s power: The SupremeCourt sides with the states. Berkeley: University of CaliforniaPress.