United State Supreme Court

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The United States Supreme Court is the highest court in the United States judicial branch.

Section 2 of Article Three of the United States Constitution outlines the jurisdiction of the federal courts of the United States:

The judicial Power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their Authority; to all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls; to all Cases of admiralty and maritime Jurisdiction; to Controversies to which the United States shall be a Party; to Controversies between two or more States; between a State and Citizens of another State; between Citizens of different States; between Citizens of the same State claiming Lands under Grants of different States, and between a State, or the Citizens thereof, and foreign States, Citizens or Subjects.

The 11th Amendment was drafted to limit the power of the United States Supreme Court, forbidding federal courts from hearing cases ""commenced or prosecuted against [a State] by Citizens of another State, or by Citizens or Subjects of any Foreign State." The exact meaning of this has been a debate that has had serious implications for cases brought under 42 U.S.C. Section 1983 for Constitutional violations. Regardless of this provision there are several ways that a state may waive their 11th Amendment immunity.

Congress further limited the jurisdictional reach of the Supreme Court by stating that federal courts may hear cases only if one or more of the following conditions are present in a case:

  1. diversity of citizenship (meaning, the parties are residents of two different states or countries, including foreign states[117]), plus a controversy of at least $75,000.
  2. If the case asks a federal question.
  3. If the United States federal government (including the Post Office) is a party in the case.

There are currently nine United States Supreme Court Justices

See United States