Mitchell and Klein's American Courts Explained: A Detailed Introduction to the Legal Process Using Real Cases

Imprint
West Academic Publishing
ISBN-13
9781634598798
Primary Subject
Introduction To U.S. Law
Format
Softbound
Copyright
2016
Series
Higher Education Coursebook
Softbound - New, softbound print book.

Description

American Courts Explained takes students on a detailed tour of American courts by following two real cases—one criminal, one civil—from the events that gave rise to them, through pre-trial proceedings, jury trials, and appeals. Along the way there are stops in state and federal trial and appellate courts, as well as the U.S. Supreme Court. It introduces readers to major debates relating to the courts: How "political" are judges? How well do different methods of selecting judges work? Do ordinary people have adequate access to lawyers? Should we trust jurors to decide complex and emotional cases? But it presents these debates in the context of actual cases so that readers can see why these debates matter to the parties, lawyers, judges, and jurors. The conviction behind this approach is that students learn best when engaged by vivid, interesting cases with details that make abstract debates and difficult legal concepts meaningful and easier to understand.

By the end of this book, readers will find that the judicial process has been demystified. They will have a firm understanding of what litigants, lawyers and judges do, will understand the structure and procedure of American civil and criminal courts, will see the purposes served by judicial rules and procedures, and will see what effect these rules, and procedures have on the outcomes of cases. Readers will have acquired the knowledge needed to critically evaluate the legal institutions we have and proposals for changing them.