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State Court Organization and Structure Essay

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Updated: Apr 20th, 2021

‘Unified’, ‘Non-Unified’, and Hybrid Models

The difference between unified and non-unified models of court systems depends on the difference in the court organization, structure, and regulation. A unified court system can be discussed as ruled with references to the centralized authority, and the cases are filed in one court (Jenkins, 2011, p. 102). On the contrary, the non-unified court system consists of the courts that are usually run separately. The administrative control in this system is decentralized, and the cases can be filed in different courts, without references to the hierarchical jurisdiction (Jenkins, 2011, p. 102).

The advantages of the unified model are in the fact that they are operationally efficient because of the centralized regulation, effective use of resources, and the efficient approach to organizing the court operations. The disadvantages are in the centralized funding which affects the demands of concrete courts (Jenkins, 2011, p. 102). The advantages of the non-unified model are in providing more powers to the local jurisdiction. The disadvantages are in the lower judicial efficiency in comparison with the unified model (Jenkins, 2011, p. 102).

The Florida State Courts System can be discussed as the unified state court system because of unifying the system in the 1970s. The unified system consists of the Florida Supreme Court, District Courts of Appeal, and trial courts. Thus, it is possible to state that the Florida state court system should not be changed or structured under any other model (The Florida State Courts System, 2014). The reason to avoid the changes in the system is in the fact that the unified system is the most efficient one, and it is effectively organized and centralized to use uniform rules and standards.

Court as Public Policy Maker

Court decisions influence state and national policy directly because the court plays the important role in forming policies at several levels while providing the list of errors or weaknesses found in the current policy depending on the concrete case. Thus, court decisions can be discussed as the means to improve the state and national policies while initiating their review (Jenkins, 2011, p. 103).

An example of the situation is Marbury v. Madison (1803). The discussed case is considered not only the basis for developing the judicial review in the USA but also as an example of how court decisions can influence the existing and developing state and national policies. The decision formulated in the court changed not only the approach to similar cases but also contributed to developing new policies associated with the landmark law (Jenkins, 2011, p. 23). One more example is Roe v. Wade (1973) which provoked the debates on the issue of abortion and contributed to changing the national policy to focus more on the aspects of privacy (Jenkins, 2011, p. 302).

The ways to satisfy the public’s interests and change the effects of the court decisions are the public’s focus on the facts that were overlooked or omitted. The next approach is the rise of the national debates on the issue (Jenkins, 2011, p. 302). While focusing on changes in the circumstances of the case, it is also possible to achieve the changes in the court decision if the current decision affects the public significantly.

The example associated with the idea is the consequences of the Roe v. Wade case in the form of Webster v. Reproductive Health Services (1989). The part of the public was against the court decisions associated with Roe v. Wade, and a range of abortion restrictions was supported in 1989 (Webster v. Reproductive Health Services (1989), 2014).

References

Jenkins, J. (2011). The American courts: A procedural approach. Baltimore, MD: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.

. (2014). Web.

. (2014). Web.

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