A COURT is a tribunal , often as a government institution , with the authority to adjudicate legal disputes between parties and carry out the administration of justice in civil , criminal , and administrative matters in accordance with the rule of law . In both common law and civil law legal systems , courts are the central means for dispute resolution , and it is generally understood that all persons have an ability to bring their claims before a court. Similarly, the rights of those accused of a crime include the right to present a defense before a court.
The system of courts that interprets and applies the law is collectively known as the judiciary . The place where a court sits is known as a venue . The room where court proceedings occur is known as a courtroom , and the building as a courthouse ; court facilities range from simple and very small facilities in rural communities to large buildings in cities.
The practical authority given to the court is known as its
The term "the court" is also used to refer to the presiding officer
or officials, usually one or more judges . The judge or panel of
judges may also be collectively referred to as "the bench " (in
contrast to attorneys and barristers , collectively referred to as
"the bar "). In the
In the United States, the legal authority of a court to take action is based on personal jurisdiction , subject-matter jurisdiction , and venue over the parties to the litigation.
* 1 Etymology
The word _court_ comes from the French _cour_, an enclosed yard,
which derives from the
The meaning of a judicial assembly is first attested in the 12th century, and derives from the earlier usage to designate a sovereign and his entourage, which met to adjudicate disputes in such an enclosed yard. The verb "to court", meaning to win favor, derives from the same source since people traveled to the sovereign's court to win his favor.
The word _jurisdiction_ comes from _juris_ and _dictio_ (a speaking
and pronouncing of the law).
"Whether a given court has jurisdiction to preside over a given case"
is a key question in any legal action. Three basic components of
jurisdiction are personal jurisdiction over an individual,
jurisdiction over the particular subject matter (subject-matter
jurisdiction ) or thing (_res_) and territorial jurisdiction.
Other concepts of jurisdiction include general jurisdiction ,
exclusive jurisdiction , territorial jurisdiction , appellate
jurisdiction , and (in the
TRIAL AND APPELLATE COURTS
Appellate courts are courts that hear appeals of lower courts and trial courts.
Some courts, such as the
CIVIL LAW COURTS AND COMMON LAW COURTS
The two major legal traditions of the western world are the civil law courts and the common law courts. These two great legal traditions are similar, in that they are products of western culture although there are significant differences between the two traditions. Civil law courts are profoundly based upon Roman Law, specifically a civil body of law entitled "Corpus iuris civilis ". This theory of civil law was rediscovered around the end of the eleventh century and became a foundation for university legal education starting in Bologna, Spain and subsequently being taught throughout continental European Universities. Civil law is firmly ensconced in the French and German legal systems. Common law courts were established by English royal judges of the King's Council after the Norman Invasion of Britain in 1066. The royal judges created a body of law by combining local customs they were made aware of through traveling and visiting local jurisdictions. This common standard of law became known as "Common Law". This legal tradition is practiced in the English and American legal systems. In most civil law jurisdictions, courts function under an inquisitorial system . In the common law system, most courts follow the adversarial system . Procedural law governs the rules by which courts operate: civil procedure for private disputes (for example); and criminal procedure for violation of the criminal law. In recent years international courts are being created to resolve matters not covered by the jurisdiction of national courts. For example, The International Criminal Court, based in The Hague, in The Kingdom of The Netherlands.
COURT TELEVISION SHOWS
Television show courts, which are not part of the judicial system, are depicted within the court show genre; however, the courts depicted have been criticized as misrepresenting real-life courts of law and the true nature of the legal system. Notable court shows include:
TYPES AND ORGANIZATION OF COURTS
Court of Faculties
Court of record
Courts of England and Wales
High Court of Justiciary
* ^ Walker, David (1980). _The Oxford companion to law_. Oxford:
Oxford University Press