Supreme Court

So what is the final stopping place that is the ultimate authority on Delaware law? The Delaware Supreme Court. As the highest court in the state, the Supreme Court has final appellate jurisdiction in criminal matters and civil final judgments from Superior Court, and certain orders from Family Court and the Court of Chancery. The Delaware Supreme Court has quite a reputation. We have mentioned that the Court of Chancery has a worldwide reputation because so many corporations are incorporated here in Delaware. Well, when a corporation is unhappy with a Chancery decision, it is appealed to the Delaware Supreme […]

Superior Court

What happens in Superior Court? Superior Court has statewide original jurisdiction over criminal and civil cases except for equity cases (which is Chancery Court) and domestic relations matters (which is Family Court) For criminal matters, Superior Court has exclusive jurisdiction over all felonies (except those involving juveniles which are heard in Family Court). For civil matters, the court has jurisdiction in cases in value over 50,000. So typically personal injury and medical malpractice cases are handled in the Superior Court. Superior Court also serves as an intermediate appellate court from over 50 administrative agencies, the Court of Common Pleas, and […]

JP Court and Family Court

We want to give everyone a baseline knowledge of the main courts in Delaware and the types of cases that each court hears because almost everyone has to deal with a court at some point in their lives. The main courts in Delaware are the JP courts, Family Court, Court of Common Pleas, Superior Court, Chancery Court and the Supreme Court. Justice of Peace Court JP Court has jurisdiction in civil cases worth 15,000 or less, some criminal misdemeanors, most motor vehicle violations (except felonies) and all landlord/tenant matters. There are no jury trials in JP Court, and you can […]

Court of Common Pleas

So far we have talked about the Justice of the Peace Courts and Family Court. So now let’s talk about the Court of Common Pleas – sometimes called CCP. The Court of Common Pleas has both civil and criminal jurisdiction. In civil cases, cases with an amount in controversy up to 50,000 can be heard. CCP also handles change of name petitions, habitual motor vehicle hearings and appeals from DMV and JP proceedings. In civil matters like these, there are no jury trials. In criminal cases, CCP has jurisdiction over all misdemeanors except certain drug offenses, all criminal motor vehicle offenses, preliminary […]

Court of Chancery

The Court of Chancery has jurisdiction over equity cases. So what is an equity case? It’s a case where the remedy sought is something other than money damages. Things like writs, injunctions, and orders of specific performance. So what kinds of cases are these? Some examples are corporate matters, commercial and contract matters, trusts, estates, and other fiduciary matters, disputes involving the purchase and sale of land, questions of title to real estate, and guardianships. Basically, the Court of Chancery is where you go if you are trying to get someone to do something or to stop doing something.

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