The Court System

Judiciary Act of 1789

What was the Evarts Act?

Congress created nine circuit courts of appeals by the Judiciary Act of 1891, also called the Evarts Act, named after U.S. senator William Evarts of New York. These new circuit court of appeals featured three judges each. A court of appeals for the D.C. Circuit was added in 1893; a court of appeals for the 10th Circuit was added in 1929; and the 11th Circuit was added in 1980 by dividing the existing 5th Circuit into two parts. In 1982, the Court created the federal circuit, which hears specialized appeals in patent and civil personnel cases among others. The Evarts Act essentially established the basic model for the modern-day federal judicial system.


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