Michigan State Courts

Courts – State Courts – Michigan

Highest Court

Supreme Court
The Supreme Court consists of 7 judges. It has jurisdiction over considering applications for leave to appeal, mainly from decisions of the Court of Appeals, and grants appeals as a matter of discretion.

Intermediate Courts

Court of Appeals
The Court of Appeals consists of 285 judges. It has jurisdiction over (1) appeals by right from Circuit Court, Court of Claims, and other tribunals as established by law or rule. (2) Considers applications for leave to appeal, primarily interlocutory, and grant appeals as a matter of discretion.

General Courts

Court of Claims
The Court of Claims has jurisdiction over claims and demands against State over $1000 except where Circuit Court has jurisdiction. State Admin. Board has dicretionary authority in claims under $1000.
No jury trials are overseen by this court.

Circuit Court
The District Court consists of 216 judges. It has jurisdiction over (1) equity, and general civil over $36,000. (2) exclusive felony jurisdiction except where there are special criminal courts. (3) appeals de novo or on record. (4) Admin. appeals.
No jury trials are overseen by this court.

Family Division
The Family Division has jurisdiction over (1) Exclusive domestic relations.(2) Exclusive delinquency, and child protective proceedings and adoptions.
No jury trials are overseen by this court.

Limited Courts

District Court
The Juvenile Court consists of 258 judges.  It has jurisdiction over (1) exclusive civil litigation under $36,000 excluding equity. Small cliams under $3,000. (2) misdemeanors, ordinance violations with sentence less than 1 year, and felony preliminaries. (3) landlord-tenant or summary proceedings.
No jury trials are overseen by this court.

Probate Court
The Probate Court consists of 106 judges.  It has jurisdiction over (1) cases pertaining to guardianships, estates, trusts, and the mentally ill. (2) Certain types of cases may be appealed directly to the Court of Appeals.
No jury trials are overseen by this court.

Municipal Court
The Municipal Court consists of 6 judges.  It has jurisdiction over (1) civil, landlord and tenant under $1,500 ($3,000) if a resolution is passed). (2) conciliation division up to $100 ($600 if a resolution is passed.) (3) misdemeanors, traffic and ordinance violations with fines less than $500,  sentence less that 1 year, and felony preliminaries.
No jury trials are overseen by this court.

Additional Information

Decisions and dissents; writing, contents
All decisions of the supreme court shall be in writing and contain a statement of facts, the reasons for the decision, or as the situation allows the reason for denial of leave to appeal.  When a judges opposes in whole or part, the judge shall provide a written statement of the reasons. (Michigan Compiled Laws Article VI § 6)

Judges of court of appeals, terms
Court of Appeals judges shall hold office for a term of six years and until their successors are elected and qualified.  The terms of office for each judge in each district shall be planned so that all terms will not expire at the same time. (Michigan Compiled Laws Article VI § 9)

Courts of record; seal, qualifications of judges
The Supreme court, the Court of Appeals, the Circuit Court, the Probate Court, and other courts shall collectively known as the Courts of Record and shall share a common seal.  Justices and judges of the said court shal be licensed to practice law in Michigan and have been admitted to practice law for at least 5 years (not applying to any judge or justice appointed or elected prior to the date this statute became part of the constitution).  A person of 70 years or older will not be elected or appointed to a judicial office.
(Michigan Compiled Laws, Article VI § 19) .

Ineligibility for other office.
Any justice or judge of a court of record shall be ineligible to be nominated for or elected to an elective office other than a judicial office during the period of his service and for one year thereafter. (Michigan Compiled Laws § 21)

Removal of judges from office.
For a reasonable cause, that is short of impeachment, the governor shall remove any judge on a concurrent resolution of two-thirds vote from both houses of the legislature.  The cause for removal shall be stated at length in the resolution.  (Michigan Compiled Laws Article VI § 25)

Power of appointment to public office
The justices and judges of the supreme court, the court of appeals, the circuit court may not make any appoitments to any office except as provided in the Michigan Constitution.
(Michigan Compiled Laws Articel VI, § 27).

Conservators of the peace.
Justices of the supreme court, judges of the court of appeals, circuit judges and other judges as provided by law shall be conservators of the peace within their respective jurisdictions.
(Michigan Compiled Laws § 29)


Inside Michigan State Courts