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Setting Up A Judiciary System For Political Process

5605 words - 23 pages

Guam Unified Court System
Research Paper for Judicial Process
Doctor Elberg
Donna Halbrook

Guam Unified Court System
The Judiciary of Guam is pleased to join the United States of America as the fifty-first state. The newest chapter of our judiciary journey begins with some major objectives in mind. One of these objectives is to increase access to justice for every member of our community. Another major objective is to ensure the Judiciary serves as a model of good governance. We will promote accountability, performance, and transparency (Torres 2010).
The new court will be a unified court system, very serving and strong at the foundation levels where we meet the ...view middle of the document...

* Summary possession.
* Ejectment proceedings (landlord-tenant), regardless of the amount of the claim.
* Non-jury trial civil cases where the relief sought is under $10,000.
* Small claims cases where the amount claimed does not exceed $3,500. Small claims are decided by a judge in an informal manner.
(Hawaii State Judiciary 2008)
The Village Courts also have jurisdiction over civil cases where:
* The debt, amount, damages, or value of the property claimed does not exceed $25,000.
* The remedy sought is specific performance valued under $25,000.
* Criminal offenses punishable by fine or by imprisonment that do not exceed one year.
* Cases arising from violations of a village ordinance.
* Petitions for restraining orders and for injunctions against harassment.
(Hawaii State Judiciary 2008)
Trial Courts
Jury trials are held in the Trial Courts, which have general jurisdiction in civil and criminal cases. They have exclusive jurisdiction of criminal felony cases, as well as civil cases where the contested amount exceeds $25,000 (Hawaii State Judiciary 2008).
Like the village courts there will be a Trial Court in each of the precincts, making four Trial Courts. Their physical location will also be in close proximity of the Village Courts. Hagatna Precinct (Central) will be the location of the First Trial Court. The First Trial Court administers the Records Management program for all Trial Courts and Family Courts. The Appellate Court and Supreme Court will also be in the central Hagatna Precinct.
Trial Courts share concurrent jurisdiction with Village Courts in civil non-jury cases in which the amounts in controversy are between $10,000 and $25,000. Other cases heard by the Trial Courts include mechanics' liens and misdemeanor violations transferred from the Village Courts for jury trials (Hawaii State Judiciary 2008).
The Trial Courts through a variety of programs, including the jury pool, legal documents, adult probation division, court reporters and records management, will provide additional services.
The Jury Pool is responsible for all functions of jury operations from development of the master list to payment for service. The master juror list is compiled from lists of registered voters, licensed drivers, and state income tax payers. After initial screening, jurors are selected as needed. They may be called to serve on either grand juries or regular trial juries. Information for persons summoned for jury duty will be available on-line (Hawaii State Judiciary 2008).
Cases to be filed in Trial Court are presented to the Legal Documents section. This program is responsible for the filing, processing, and maintenance of all court documents and records for the Trial Court, including Family Court matters (Hawaii State Judiciary 2008).
The Adult Probation Division prepares pre-sentence and other investigative reports ordered by the Criminal Division and supervises defendants...

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