Article 7, Indiana Constitution

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Indiana Constitution
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Article 7 of the Indiana Constitution is entitled Judicial and consists of 21 sections.

Section 1

Text of Section 1:

Judicial Power

The judicial power of the State shall be vested in one Supreme Court, one Court of Appeals, Circuit Courts, and such other courts as the General Assembly may establish.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on March 14, 1881.
  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 2

Text of Section 2:

Supreme Court

The Supreme Court shall consist of the Chief Justice of the State and not less than four nor more than eight associate justices; a majority of whom shall form a quorum. The court may appoint such personnel as may be necessary.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 3

Text of Section 3:

Chief Justice

The Chief Justice of the State shall be selected by the judicial nominating commission from the members of the Supreme Court and he shall retain that office for a period of five years, subject to reappointment in the same manner, except that a member of the Court may resign the office of Chief Justice without resigning from the Court. During a vacancy in the office of Chief Justice caused by absence, illness, incapacity or resignation all powers and duties of that office shall devolve upon the member of the Supreme Court who is senior in length of service and if equal in length of service the determination shall be by lot until such time as the cause of the vacancy is terminated or the vacancy is filled.

The Chief Justice of the State shall appoint such persons as the General Assembly by law may provide for the administration of his office. The Chief Justice shall have prepared and submit to the General Assembly regular reports on the condition of the courts and such other reports as may be requested.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 4

Text of Section 4:

Jurisdiction of Supreme Court

The Supreme Court shall have no original jurisdiction except in admission to the practice of law; discipline or disbarment of those admitted; the unauthorized practice of law; discipline, removal and retirement of justices and judges; supervision of the exercise of jurisdiction by the other courts of the State; and issuance of writs necessary or appropriate in aid of its jurisdiction. The Supreme Court shall exercise appellate jurisdiction under such terms and conditions as specified by rules except that appeals from a judgment imposing a sentence of death shall be taken directly to the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court shall have, in all appeals of criminal cases, the power to review all questions of law and to review and revise the sentence imposed.[1]

Amendments

Section 5

Text of Section 5:

Court of Appeals

The Court of Appeals shall consist of as many geographic districts and sit at such locations as the General Assembly shall determine to be necessary. Each geographic district of the Court shall consist of three judges. The judges of each geographic district shall appoint such personnel as the General Assembly may provide by law.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 6

Text of Section 6:

Jurisdiction of Court of Appeals

The Court shall have no original jurisdiction, except that it may be authorized by rules of the Supreme Court to review directly decisions of administrative agencies. In all other cases, it shall exercise appellate jurisdiction under such terms and conditions as the Supreme Court shall specify by rules which shall, however, provide in all cases an absolute right to one appeal and to the extent provided by rule, review and revision of sentences for defendants in all criminal cases.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 7

Text of Section 7:

Judicial Circuits

The State shall, from time to time, be divided into judicial circuits; and a Judge for each circuit shall be elected by the voters thereof. He shall reside within the circuit and shall have been duly admitted to practice law by the Supreme Court of Indiana; he shall hold his office for the term of six years, if he so long behaves well.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 8

Text of Section 8:

Circuit Courts

The Circuit Courts shall have such civil and criminal jurisdiction as may be prescribed by law.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 9

Text of Section 9:

Judicial Nominating Commission

There shall be one judicial nominating commission for the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals. This commission shall, in addition, be the commission on judicial qualifications for the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals.

The judicial nominating commission shall consist of seven members, a majority of whom shall form a quorum, one of whom shall be the Chief Justice of the State or a Justice of the Supreme Court whom he may designate, who shall act as chairman. Those admitted to the practice of law shall elect three of their number to serve as members of said commission. All elections shall be in such manner as the General Assembly may provide. The Governor shall appoint to the commission three citizens, not admitted to the practice of law. The terms of office and compensation for members of a judicial nominating commission shall be fixed by the General Assembly. No member of a judicial nominating commission other than the Chief Justice or his designee shall hold any other salaried public office. No member shall hold an office in a political party or organization. No member of the judicial nominating commission shall be eligible for appointment to a judicial office so long as he is a member of the commission and for a period of three years thereafter.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 8, 1960.
  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 10

Text of Section 10:

Selection of Justices of the Supreme Court and Judges of the Court of Appeals

A vacancy in a judicial office in the Supreme Court or Court of Appeals shall be filled by the Governor, without regard to political affiliation, from a list of three nominees presented to him by the judicial nominating commission. If the Governor shall fail to make an appointment from the list within sixty days from the day it is presented to him, the appointment shall be made by the Chief Justice or the acting Chief Justice from the same list.

To be eligible for nomination as a justice of the Supreme Court or Judge of the Court of Appeals, a person must be domiciled within the geographic district, a citizen of the United States, admitted to the practice of law in the courts of the State for a period of not less than ten (10) years or must have served as a judge of a circuit, superior or criminal court of the State of Indiana for a period of not less than five (5) years.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 11

Text of Section 11:

Tenure of Justices of Supreme Court and Judges of the Court of Appeals

A justice of the Supreme Court or Judge of the Court of Appeals shall serve until the next general election following the expiration of two years from the date of appointment, and subject to approval or rejection by the electorate, shall continue to serve for terms of ten years, so long as he retains his office. In the case of a justice of the Supreme Court, the electorate of the entire state shall vote on the question of approval or rejection. In the case of judges of the Court of Appeals the electorate of the geographic district in which he serves shall vote on the question of approval or rejection.

Every such justice and judge shall retire at the age specified by statute in effect at the commencement of his current term.

Every such justice or judge is disqualified from acting as a judicial officer, without loss of salary, while there is pending (1) an indictment or information charging him in any court in the United States with a crime punishable as a felony under the laws of Indiana or the United States, or (2) a recommendation to the Supreme Court by the commission on judicial qualifications for his removal or retirement.

On recommendation of the commission on judicial qualifications or on its own motion, the Supreme Court may suspend such justice or judge from office without salary when in any court in the United States he pleads guilty or no contest or is found guilty of a crime punishable as a felony under the laws of Indiana or the United States, or of any other crime that involves moral turpitude under that law. If his conviction is reversed, suspension terminates and he shall be paid his salary for the period of suspension. If he is suspended and his conviction becomes final the Supreme Court shall remove him from office.

On recommendation of the commission on judicial qualifications the Supreme Court may (1) retire such justice or judge for disability that seriously interferes with the performance of his duties and is or is likely to become permanent, and (2) censure or remove such justice or judge, for action occurring not more than six years prior to the commencement of his current term, when such action constitutes willful misconduct in office, willful and persistent failure to perform his duties, habitual intemperance, or conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice that brings the judicial office into disrepute.

A justice or judge so retired by the Supreme Court shall be considered to have retired voluntarily. A justice or judge so removed by the Supreme Court is ineligible for judicial office and pending further order of the Court he is suspended from practicing law in this State.

Upon receipt by the Supreme Court of any such recommendation, the Court shall hold a hearing, at which such justice or judge is entitled to be present, and make such determinations as shall be required. No justice shall participate in the determination of such hearing when it concerns himself.

The Supreme Court shall make rules implementing this section and provide for convening of hearings. Hearings and proceedings shall be public upon request of the justice or judge whom it concerns.

No such justice or judge shall, during his term of office, engage in the practice of law, run for elective office other than a judicial office, directly or indirectly make any contribution to, or hold any office in, a political party or organization or take part in any political campaign.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 4, 1952.
  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 12

Text of Section 12:

Substitution of Judges

The General Assembly may provide, by law, that the Judge of one circuit may hold the Courts of another circuit, in cases of necessity or convenience; and in case of temporary inability of any Judge, from sickness or other cause, to hold the Courts in his circuit, provision may be made, by law, for holding such courts.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 13

Text of Section 13:

Removal of Circuit Court Judges and Prosecuting Attorneys

Any Judge of the Circuit Court or Prosecuting Attorney, who shall have been convicted of corruption or other high crime, may, on information in the name of the State, be removed from office by the Supreme Court, or in such other manner as may be prescribed by law.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 14

Text of Section 14:

Repealed on November 6, 1984.[1]

Section 15

Text of Section 15:

No Limitation on Term of Office

The provisions of Article 15, Section 2, prohibiting terms of office longer than four years, shall not apply to justices and judges.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 16

Text of Section 16:

Prosecuting Attorneys

There shall be elected in each judicial circuit by the voters thereof a prosecuting attorney, who shall have been admitted to the practice of law in this State before his election, who shall hold his office for four years, and whose term of office shall begin on the first day of January next succeeding his election. The election of prosecuting attorneys under this section shall be held at the time of holding the general election in the year 1974 and each four years thereafter.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 17

Text of Section 17:

Grand Jury

The General Assembly may modify, or abolish, the grand jury system.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 18

Text of Section 18:

Criminal Prosecutions

All criminal prosecutions shall be carried on in the name, and by the authority of the state; and the style of all process shall be: "The State of Indiana."[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 19

Text of Section 19:

Pay

The Justices of Supreme Court and Judges of the Court of Appeals and of the Circuit Courts shall at stated times receive a compensation which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.[1]

Amendments

  • As amended on November 3, 1970.

Section 20

Text of Section 20:

Repealed November 6, 1984. The schedule adopted with the November 3, 1970, amendment to Article 7 was stricken out by a November 6, 1984, amendment.[1]

Section 21

Text of Section 21:

Repealed on November 8, 1932.[1]

See also

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