Missouri Court of Appeals

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Missouri Court of Appeals is located in Missouri
St. Louis (Eastern)
St. Louis (Eastern)
Kansas City (Western)
Kansas City (Western)
Springfield (Southern)
Springfield (Southern)
Court locations

The Missouri Court of Appeals is the intermediate appellate court for the state of Missouri. The court handles most of the appeals from the Missouri Circuit Courts. The court is divided into three geographic districts: Eastern (based in St. Louis), Western (based in Kansas City), and Southern (based in Springfield).[1] For example, appeals taken from trials in St. Louis County will go to the Eastern District, and appeals taken from trials in Jackson County (Kansas City) will go to the Western District.

After a case is decided in the Court of Appeals, the losing party may chose to accept the result, or to appeal further to the Supreme Court of Missouri. In most appeals, the Supreme Court of Missouri may, and often does, reject an appeal from the Court of Appeals (called "discretionary jurisdiction"). Historically, less than ten percent of the appeals heard by the Missouri Court of Appeals are transferred to the Supreme Court. Thus, for the vast majority of appeals, the Court of Appeals decision is final.[2]

The Eastern District, in green, is based in St. Louis. The Western District, in blue, is based in Kansas City. The Southern District, in red, is based in Springfield.

Jurisdiction[edit]

The Missouri Court of Appeals has jurisdiction over all appeals which do not fall under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of Missouri. The five categories of appeals over which the Supreme Court exercises exclusive jurisdiction are:

  • The validity of a United States statute or treaty.
  • The validity of a Missouri statute or constitutional provision.
  • The state's revenue laws.
  • Challenges to a statewide elected official's right to hold office.
  • Imposition of the death penalty.[3]

Therefore, if an appeal falls within one of these five categories, the appeal must go directly to the Missouri Supreme Court. If an appeal does not fall within one of these five categories, the Missouri Court of Appeals may hear the case.[4]

Opinions[edit]

The Missouri court of appeals functions by issuing written judicial opinions. These opinions create precedent for future cases within each District's geographic region.[5]

These opinions are available to the public. The court publishes the opinions to its website when they are issued.[6]

Judges[edit]

There are fourteen judges in the Eastern District, eleven judges in the Western District, and seven judges in the Southern District. Judges are selected via the Missouri Plan.[7] Often, a district will have fewer judges than normal because of a vacancy, which occurs after a sitting judge leaves the Court and before a new judge can be appointed.[8]

Under the Constitution of Missouri, Court of Appeals judges must be at least 30 years old, licensed to practice law in Missouri, a United States citizen for at least 15 years, a qualified voter of the state for nine years preceding selection, and a resident of the appellate district in which the judge serves. Judges serve a term of twelve years, but may seek additional terms. Mandatory retirement age for judges is 70, after which a judge may elect to go on senior status.[9]

Current judges[edit]

Eastern District (St. Louis) [10][edit]

  • Chief Judge Lisa Van Amburg
  • Judge Robert G. Dowd Jr.
  • Judge Mary Kathryn Hoff
  • Judge Lawrence E. Mooney
  • Judge Sherri B. Sullivan
  • Judge Roy L. Richter
  • Judge Kurt S. Odenwald
  • Judge Gary M. Gaertner, Jr.
  • Judge Robert M. Clayton III
  • Judge Angela Turner Quigless
  • Judge Philip M. Hess
  • Judge Lisa Page
  • Judge Colleen Dolan

Western District (Kansas City) [11][edit]

  • Chief Judge Alok Ahuja
  • Judge James E. Welsh
  • Judge Lisa White Hardwick
  • Judge Thomas H. Newton
  • Judge Victor C. Howard
  • Judge Karen King Mitchell
  • Judge Mark D. Pfeiffer
  • Judge Cynthia L. Martin
  • Judge Gary D. Witt
  • Judge Anthony Rex Gabbert

Southern District (Springfield) [12][edit]

  • Chief Judge Mary W. Sheffield
  • Judge Nancy Steffen Rahmeyer
  • Judge Jeffrey W. Bates
  • Judge Gary W. Lynch
  • Judge Daniel E. Scott
  • Judge Don E. Burrell Jr.
  • Judge William W. Francis Jr.

Courthouses[edit]

Eastern District (St. Louis)[edit]

The Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District, is located in the historic Old Post Office building in downtown St. Louis. The address is One Post Office Square, 815 Olive Street, Room 304, St. Louis, Missouri 63101.[13]

Western District (Kansas City)[edit]

The Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District is located in its own courthouse in downtown Kansas City. The courthouse—built in 1982—is the state's only intermediate appellate courthouse.[14] The address is 1300 Oak Street, Kansas City, Missouri 64106-2970.[15]

Southern District (Springfield)[edit]

The Missouri Court of Appeals, Southern District, is located in the Hammons Building in Springfield, Missouri.[16] The address is 300 Hammons Parkway, Springfield, Missouri 65806.[17]

References[edit]

External links[edit]