History of the US Court System

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Major Historical Developments in U.S. Courts Introduction Today, the court system in the United States is comprised of a vast and far-flung network of state and federal courts that adjudicate millions of cases each year, but this dual court system has not always been in place. The dual court system of federal and state courts that is in place today is the result of a number of historical developments in the U.S. courts over the years. This paper provides a review of the relevant literature to identify significant milestones in the historical development of the court system in the United States including the dual court system, provisions for probation and parole. A summary of the research and important findings are presented in the conclusion. Review and Discussion The English common law had an important influence on the creation of the legal system and its administration in the United States, but the Colonialists saw fit to make some changes they felt were necessary for a democratic state. In this regard, one historian reports that, "The Colonial period in America saw changes to the English Common Law which reflected the cultural and social differences that were developing in the new nation. In many ways the law in America became more complex, reflecting the influence of 'enlightenment' philosophy and, at the same time, reacting to the concentration of power in the hands of the leaders" (Sterling, 2002, para. 2). As a result, the court system in the United States
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