We will study the comparison of the judicial system in India and the US to understand the legal systems.
Let us first get into more details about Courts in India:
Structure of Courts in India
India being a Federal system, the Constitution of India has provided a single integrated system of Courts for the Union as well as the States which administer both Union and State laws. The Indian Judicial System is bifurcated into two branches - Civil and Criminal (at Taluk and District levels).
The Supreme Court has original, appellate and advisory jurisdiction. There are 18 high courts in the country out of which three are having jurisdiction over more than one state - Bombay, Guwahati, Punjab and Haryana High Court.The district courts of India are established by the State governments in India for every district.
Types of Courts in India
There are 4 types of Courts in India:
# Supreme Court - The Supreme Court of India is the highest judicial forum and final court of appeal as established by the Constitution of India. According to the Constitution of India, the role of the Supreme Court is that of a federal court and guardian of the Constitution. The Supreme Court is meant to be the last resort and highest appellate court which takes up appeals against judgments of the High Courts of the states and territories. Also,disputes between states or petitions involving a serious infringement of fundamental and human rights are usually brought directly to the Supreme Court.
# High Courts- These are below Supreme Courts. There are 24 High Courts at the State level. Below the High Courts are a hierarchy of subordinate courts such as the civil courts, family courts, criminal courts and various other district courts.
# District/Subordinate Courts - These include district courts and other courts. The District Courts of India are established by the State governments in India for every district or for one or more districts together taking into account the number of cases, population distribution in the district. They administer justice in India at a district level. These courts are under administrative control of the High Court of the State to which the district concerned belongs. The decisions of District court are subject to the appellate jurisdiction of the concerned High court. (Source: Wikipedia)
# Lok Adalats - It solves cases at much faster pace than any other court. It is below districts courts.
Court Structure in US
The structure of court and judicial system to an extent varies from state to State. As per the New York Judiciary system, there are trial courts and appellate courts. Most cases start at the trial-court level, parties occasionally ask a higher court to reconsider the case, which is called an appeal and is dealt in the appellate courts. NY city has Civil and Criminal Courts while outside the NY city - District Courts, City Courts, Town and Village Justice Courts, County Courts located in each county outside NY city.
Types of Courts in US
The United States court system comprises of a federal system and 50 state systems, each having its own structures and legal procedures.
# State Courts: Most legal issues are resolved in State Trial Courts, which are the courts at the lowest tier in a State's Court system. Depending on the structure of a State's Court system, trial courts may be city or Municipal Courts, Justice of the peace or JP courts, County or Circuit Courts, or even Regional Trial Courts.
Many states also have specialized trial courts that hear cases related to a very specific area of the law including Probate courts, Family law courts, Juvenile courts, and Small claims courts. Every state has a court of last resort, generally called the "Supreme Court." Although Supreme Court decisions are final within a State Court System, sometimes they can be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
# Federal Courts: Most of the Federal Court system is divided into Districts and Circuits. There is at least one Federal District in every state, but populous states can have multiple districts. Texas has Northern, Western, Southern and Eastern districts. Generally, Federal lawsuits start out at the district level in a federal court. Tax court, bankruptcy court, court of federal claims, and court of veteran appeals are all examples of special Federal Courts.
Each federal circuit includes more than one district and is home to a Federal Court of Appeal. This court plays a role analogous to a state appellate court.At the very top of the federal court system is the U.S. Supreme Court. There are nine Justices who sit on the Supreme Court and are nominated by the President, approved by the U.S. Senate.