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Texas Courts of Appeal

Texas has split its Court of Appeals into two separate entities, one to handle civil appeals and the other to handle criminal appeals. They are called the Court of Criminal Appeals and the Court of Appeals.

Texas has one Court of Criminal Appeals with nine justices. Texas has 14 Courts of Appeal with 80 justices presiding. The Court of Appeals is the intermediate appellate court for the state and handles all civil appeals with regional jurisdiction. It was created in 1876 to take some of the workload off the Supreme Court. The Court of Criminal Appeals is located in Austin, Texas but can hear oral arguments and review briefs in other areas of the state. It was also created in 1876 to relieve some of the caseload off of the Supreme Court. Justices are elected by voters in the state, and they serve six-year terms.

Each of the Courts of Appeal serves various counties which are listed clearly on the Texas Judicial Branch website, along with the justices serving that court, and recently published “opinions.”

All the courts of appeal in Texas do not hold trials. Justices sit in panels of three to review cases that have been tried in the lower courts. They hear oral arguments and read briefs prepared by both sides to determine if any errors were made in applying the law when the original case was decided.

There are Courts of Appeals in the following Texas towns: Amarillo, Austin, Beaumont, Corpus Christi/Edinburg, Dallas, Eastland, El Paso, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Texarkana, Tyler, Waco, and Houston that has two.

The Texas Judicial Branch website has an extensive section on the judges that serve Texas courts inducing the justices in the Courts of Appeal. Users can read biographies of each and find out information about their salaries and statistics along with the requirements needed to become a judge in the Texas court system.

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