THERE ARE TWO DIVISIONS OF THE ARIZONA COURT OF
1. Division One is in Phoenix.
2. Division Two is in Tucson.
A three-judge panel decides every case. Division One has five three-judge
panels, for a total of fifteen judges.
THE COURT OF APPEALS DO?
Appeals - a person who has
been convicted of a crime asks us to review what happened at his or her
trial and find out if the judge, the prosecutor, or the defense attorney
made mistakes that would justify a reversal of the conviction or a new
Civil Appeals - typically,
the loser in a civil trial (the kind of trial where the jury awards the
winner money) asks the court for a new trial claiming the trial judge
made mistakes, or just asks us to determine if the amount of money awarded
was too large.
Mental Health - when a person
is involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital because he or she
is a danger to himself or others, he or she can ask us to review the hearing
at which the mental health board decided to hospitalize him.
Juvenile - A delinquency
hearing is a civil proceeding, but after a minor has been found delinquent,
he or she has the same appeals process as a criminal defendant.
HOW DOES THE COURT OF APPEALS DECIDE CASES?
When attorneys appeal from
a lower court ruling, they must file briefs which discuss each side’s
argument. Briefs are usually 20 to 30 pages long, and must have a facts
and an argument section. In the argument section, the attorney tries to
convince the court to decide in her favor. If the court needs more information
after reading the briefs, we hold oral argument. Oral Argument is not
a trial. The Court of Appeals does not have trials. This means no witnesses
testify and no jury is present. Instead, the attorneys argue about whether
there was an error at trial, and the judges ask the attorneys questions.In
addition to the briefs and oral arguments, the court reviews the transcripts
from the trial and any other information about the case from the trial
When the Court of Appeals makes
a decision, it is in writing and can become the law of Arizona for all
similar cases and factual situations.