Court of Appeals Definition

Learn about the definition of court of appeals, its functions, examples of cases, statistics, and the importance of these appellate courts.

Introduction to Court of Appeals

A court of appeals is a type of appellate court that reviews decisions made by lower courts. These courts are responsible for determining whether the lower court made the correct legal decisions based on the evidence presented in the case.

How Court of Appeals Work

When a party is dissatisfied with the verdict of a lower court, they can file an appeal with the court of appeals. The judges in the court of appeals will review the case, listen to arguments from both parties, and make a decision based on the law.

Examples of Court of Appeals Cases

  • In 2019, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit heard a case regarding the legality of the Affordable Care Act. The court ultimately upheld the law, stating that it was constitutional.

  • In 2020, the California Court of Appeals overturned a lower court’s decision in a high-profile custody battle, ruling in favor of the mother.

Statistics on Court of Appeals

According to a study conducted in 2021, over 60% of cases appealed to the United States Court of Appeals result in the original decision being upheld. This statistic highlights the importance of having a strong legal argument when appealing a case.


Court of appeals play a crucial role in ensuring that the judicial system operates fairly and efficiently. These courts provide an avenue for parties to challenge lower court decisions and seek justice through a thorough review of the case by experienced judges.

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