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South Carolina Court Appeals

The South Carolina court of appeals is the state intermediate appellate courts of the United States federal court system. A court of appeal decides appeals from the district courts within its federal judicial circuit, and in some instances from other designated federal courts and administrative agencies. The court of appeals of South Carolina hears all South Carolina court appeals including all circuit appeals and family court appeals, excepting state appeals that are within the seven classes of exclusive Supreme Court jurisdiction. The classes include hearing appeals against death penalty as well as election laws. The Court of Appeals is the judicial system's newest court, having commenced operation on September 1, 1983. It consists of a Chief Judge and eight associate judges who are elected by the General Assembly to staggered terms of six years each.

The Court sits either as three panels of three judges each or as a whole and it may hear oral arguments and motions in any South Carolina county. The system of setting up a court of appeals was revived in order to deal with the huge amount of pending appellate cases. Initially, the newly formed court of appeals only heard cases diverted by the Superior court. Gradually, however, he court assumed the position of the intermediary appellate court and South Carolina court appeals are now sent to the Superior court on recommendation.

Review South Carolina Court of Appeals Records


Directly under the court of appeals is the South Carolina circuit court of appeals, the state's court of general jurisdiction. It has a South Carolina court of civil appeals or the Court of Common Pleas and a South Carolina court of criminal appeals or the Court of General Sessions. In addition to its general trial jurisdiction, the Circuit Court has limited appellate jurisdiction over appeals from the Probate Court, Magistrate's Court, and Municipal Court, as well as appeals from the Administrative Law Judge Division over matters relating to state administrative and regulatory agencies. The state is divided into sixteen judicial circuits. Each circuit has at least one resident judge who maintains an office in the judge's home county within the circuit.

Circuit judges serve the sixteen circuits, on a rotation basis, with court terms and assignments determined by the Chief Justice through Court Administration. The Family Courts have exclusive jurisdiction over all South Carolina court appeals involving domestic or family relationships. Pursuant to this provision, the family courts are the sole forum for the hearing of all appeals/circuit concerning marriage, divorce, legal separation, custody, visitation rights, termination of parental rights, adoption, support, alimony, division of marital property, and change of name. These courts also generally have exclusive jurisdiction over minors under the age of seventeen.

For anyone who wishes to review South Carolina court of appeals records, it is necessary to know that finding court records can be a daunting task. But there are some court databases that allow access to records of South Carolina court cases. The South Carolina Court civil appeals are listed separately from the South Carolina criminal appeals in most of the databases. So, in order for his search to bear fruitful results the person should know how the court records are arranged. This is however not as difficult as it sounds. A little research can go a long way in unearthing the necessary records. Interested or sanctioned parties are bound to find the network of court databases extremely useful.

If you are not inclined to search through the State owned databases, you can try linking to various private commercial resources. Most of them provide you the facility of browsing through their entire database covering opinions and decisions on court appeals. However, you may find that the service is not entirely gratis, especially when you want o delve a little deeper into the details of a particular case. You need to part with a considerable sum of money in order to gain access to the information required by you. It is perfectly easy for you to browse through the old appellate cases along with the new.

Most websites display a calendar replete with hyperlinks. You jus need to click on the necessary month and year if you know the date of the hearing or decision. Law students and researchers can check them out one by one in order to study the various legal implications of the appellate decisions. If you do not have the time to browse through the entire collection, it will be wise to conduct a specific search. The database can return satisfactory results when you search by title, case number or docket number associated with specific South Carolina court appeals . Case summaries as well as articles related to the case can be viewed by conducting appropriate searches.

Private URLs are not entirely dependable always. They may not be updated frequently and their accuracy is debatable as well. Some of them are not above charging you unduly for services which are supposed to be free of cost. Logging in to the official website of South Carolina Court of appeals may serve your purpose ideally. The website is user friendly and you can get straight to the point without wasting a lot of time browsing through irrelevant topics. You can avail of several options while proceeding to search for opinions given by the court of appeals in South Carolina. Finding out a particular court decision by case number is the surest way of obtaining your desired result. You can also try to search by the type of court and date range if you do not have any idea about the case number.

Opinions can also be browsed by choosing the author from the drop down box given against the search facility. Since the opinions expressed by the court of appeals often contradicts those given by the trial judges and family courts, it becomes imperative for you to take a look at the original decision first. Searching the database by choosing the names of the concerned circuit court judges or family judges can help you gather detailed information regarding the court appeal. You may also get the proper information by selecting the master-in-equity. If any of these methods do not appeal to you, it is better to go in for a text search. Entering the proper key words or a relevant string query will help you in finding out the right information.

You can also go through an entire page dedicated to the published opinions as well as the unpublished ones. This information is displayed within the official legal website of the State in order to offer the attorneys and the general public an overview of the latest decisions taken by the South Carolina court of appeals.