Collapse to view only § 44. Appointment, tenure, residence and salary of circuit judges

§ 41.
Number and composition of circuits

The thirteen judicial circuits of the United States are constituted as follows:

Circuits

Composition

District of Columbia

District of Columbia.

First

Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island.

Second

Connecticut, New York, Vermont.

Third

Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virgin Islands.

Fourth

Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia.

Fifth

District of the Canal Zone, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas.

Sixth

Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee.

Seventh

Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin.

Eighth

Arkansas, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota.

Ninth

Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Guam, Hawaii.

Tenth

Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah, Wyoming.

Eleventh

Alabama, Florida, Georgia.

Federal

All Federal judicial districts.

(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 870; Oct. 31, 1951, ch. 655, § 34, 65 Stat. 723; Pub. L. 96–452, § 2, Oct. 14, 1980, 94 Stat. 1994; Pub. L. 97–164, title I, § 101, Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 25.)
§ 42.
Allotment of Supreme Court justices to circuits

The Chief Justice of the United States and the associate justices of the Supreme Court shall from time to time be allotted as circuit justices among the circuits by order of the Supreme Court. The Chief Justice may make such allotments in vacation.

A justice may be assigned to more than one circuit, and two or more justices may be assigned to the same circuit.

(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 870.)
§ 43.
Creation and composition of courts
(a) There shall be in each circuit a court of appeals, which shall be a court of record, known as the United States Court of Appeals for the circuit.
(b) Each court of appeals shall consist of the circuit judges of the circuit in regular active service. The circuit justice and justices or judges designated or assigned shall be competent to sit as judges of the court.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 870; Pub. L. 88–176, § 1(a), Nov. 13, 1963, 77 Stat. 331.)
§ 44.
Appointment, tenure, residence and salary of circuit judges
(a) The President shall appoint, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, circuit judges for the several circuits as follows:

Circuits

Number of

Judges

District of Columbia

11  

First

6  

Second

13  

Third

14  

Fourth

15  

Fifth

17  

Sixth

16  

Seventh

11  

Eighth

11  

Ninth

29  

Tenth

12  

Eleventh

12  

Federal

12.

(b) Circuit judges shall hold office during good behavior.
(c) Except in the District of Columbia, each circuit judge shall be a resident of the circuit for which appointed at the time of his appointment and thereafter while in active service. While in active service, each circuit judge of the Federal judicial circuit appointed after the effective date of the Federal Courts Improvement Act of 1982, and the chief judge of the Federal judicial circuit, whenever appointed, shall reside within fifty miles of the District of Columbia. In each circuit (other than the Federal judicial circuit) there shall be at least one circuit judge in regular active service appointed from the residents of each state 1
1 So in original. Probably should be capitalized.
in that circuit.
(d) Each circuit judge shall receive a salary at an annual rate determined under section 225 of the Federal Salary Act of 1967 (2 U.S.C. 351–361), as adjusted by section 461 of this title.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 871; Aug. 3, 1949, ch. 387, § 1, 63 Stat. 493; Feb. 10, 1954, ch. 6, § 1, 68 Stat. 8; Mar. 2, 1955, ch. 9, § 1(b), 69 Stat. 10; Pub. L. 87–36, § 1(b), May 19, 1961, 75 Stat. 80; Pub. L. 88–426, title IV, § 403(b), Aug. 14, 1964, 78 Stat. 434; Pub. L. 89–372, § 1(b), Mar. 18, 1966, 80 Stat. 75; Pub. L. 90–347, § 3, June 18, 1968, 82 Stat. 184; Pub. L. 94–82, title II, § 205(b)(2), Aug. 9, 1975, 89 Stat. 422; Pub. L. 95–486, § 3(b), Oct. 20, 1978, 92 Stat. 1632; Pub. L. 96–452, § 3, Oct. 14, 1980, 94 Stat. 1994; Pub. L. 97–164, title I, § 102, Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 25; Pub. L. 98–353, title II, § 201(b), July 10, 1984, 98 Stat. 346; Pub. L. 101–650, title II, § 202(b), Dec. 1, 1990, 104 Stat. 5099; Pub. L. 102–198, § 10(c), Dec. 9, 1991, 105 Stat. 1626; Pub. L. 105–119, title III, § 307, Nov. 26, 1997, 111 Stat. 2493; Pub. L. 110–177, title V, § 509(a), Jan. 7, 2008, 121 Stat. 2543.)
§ 45.
Chief judges; precedence of judges
(a)
(1)
The chief judge of the circuit shall be the circuit judge in regular active service who is senior in commission of those judges who—
(A) are sixty-four years of age or under;
(B) have served for one year or more as a circuit judge; and
(C) have not served previously as chief judge.
(2)
(A) In any case in which no circuit judge meets the qualifications of paragraph (1), the youngest circuit judge in regular active service who is sixty-five years of age or over and who has served as circuit judge for one year or more shall act as the chief judge.
(B) In any case under subparagraph (A) in which there is no circuit judge in regular active service who has served as a circuit judge for one year or more, the circuit judge in regular active service who is senior in commission and who has not served previously as chief judge shall act as the chief judge.
(3)
(A) Except as provided in subparagraph (C), the chief judge of the circuit appointed under paragraph (1) shall serve for a term of seven years and shall serve after expiration of such term until another judge is eligible under paragraph (1) to serve as chief judge of the circuit.
(B)
(C) No circuit judge may serve or act as chief judge of the circuit after attaining the age of seventy years unless no other circuit judge is qualified to serve as chief judge of the circuit under paragraph (1) or is qualified to act as chief judge under paragraph (2).
(b) The chief judge shall have precedence and preside at any session of the court which he attends. Other circuit judges of the court in regular active service shall have precedence and preside according to the seniority of their commissions. Judges whose commissions bear the same date shall have precedence according to seniority in age. The circuit justice, however, shall have precedence over all the circuit judges and shall preside at any session which he attends.
(c) If the chief judge desires to be relieved of his duties as chief judge while retaining his active status as circuit judge, he may so certify to the Chief Justice of the United States, and thereafter the chief judge of the circuit shall be such other circuit judge who is qualified to serve or act as chief judge under subsection (a).
(d) If a chief judge is temporarily unable to perform his duties as such, they shall be performed by the circuit judge in active service, present in the circuit and able and qualified to act, who is next in precedence.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 871; Oct. 31, 1951, ch. 655, § 35, 65 Stat. 723; Pub. L. 85–593, § 1, Aug. 6, 1958, 72 Stat. 497; Pub. L. 97–164, title II, §§ 201, 204, Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 51, 53.)
§ 46.
Assignment of judges; panels; hearings; quorum
(a) Circuit judges shall sit on the court and its panels in such order and at such times as the court directs.
(b) In each circuit the court may authorize the hearing and determination of cases and controversies by separate panels, each consisting of three judges, at least a majority of whom shall be judges of that court, unless such judges cannot sit because recused or disqualified, or unless the chief judge of that court certifies that there is an emergency including, but not limited to, the unavailability of a judge of the court because of illness. Such panels shall sit at the times and places and hear the cases and controversies assigned as the court directs. The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit shall determine by rule a procedure for the rotation of judges from panel to panel to ensure that all of the judges sit on a representative cross section of the cases heard and, notwithstanding the first sentence of this subsection, may determine by rule the number of judges, not less than three, who constitute a panel.
(c) Cases and controversies shall be heard and determined by a court or panel of not more than three judges (except that the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit may sit in panels of more than three judges if its rules so provide), unless a hearing or rehearing before the court in banc is ordered by a majority of the circuit judges of the circuit who are in regular active service. A court in banc shall consist of all circuit judges in regular active service, or such number of judges as may be prescribed in accordance with section 6 of Public Law 95–486 (92 Stat. 1633), except that any senior circuit judge of the circuit shall be eligible (1) to participate, at his election and upon designation and assignment pursuant to section 294(c) of this title and the rules of the circuit, as a member of an in banc court reviewing a decision of a panel of which such judge was a member, or (2) to continue to participate in the decision of a case or controversy that was heard or reheard by the court in banc at a time when such judge was in regular active service.
(d) A majority of the number of judges authorized to constitute a court or panel thereof, as provided in paragraph (c), shall constitute a quorum.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 871; Pub. L. 88–176, § 1(b), Nov. 13, 1963, 77 Stat. 331; Pub. L. 95–486, § 5(a), (b), Oct. 20, 1978, 92 Stat. 1633; Pub. L. 97–164, title I, § 103, title II, § 205, Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 25, 53; Pub. L. 104–175, § 1, Aug. 6, 1996, 110 Stat. 1556.)
§ 47.
Disqualification of trial judge to hear appeal

No judge shall hear or determine an appeal from the decision of a case or issue tried by him.

(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 872.)
§ 48.
Terms of court
(a) The courts of appeals shall hold regular sessions at the places listed below, and at such other places within the respective circuit as each court may designate by rule.

Circuits

Places

District of Columbia

Washington.

First

Boston.

Second

New York.

Third

Philadelphia.

Fourth

Richmond, Asheville.

Fifth

New Orleans, Fort Worth, Jackson.

Sixth

Cincinnati.

Seventh

Chicago.

Eighth

St. Louis, Kansas City, Omaha, St. Paul.

Ninth

San Francisco, Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle.

Tenth

Denver, Wichita, Oklahoma City.

Eleventh

Atlanta, Jacksonville, Montgomery.

Federal

District of Columbia, and in any other place listed above as the court by rule directs.

(b) Each court of appeals may hold special sessions at any place within its circuit as the nature of the business may require, and upon such notice as the court orders. The court may transact any business at a special session which it might transact at a regular session.
(c) Any court of appeals may pretermit any regular session of court at any place for insufficient business or other good cause.
(d) The times and places of the sessions of the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit shall be prescribed with a view to securing reasonable opportunity to citizens to appear before the court with as little inconvenience and expense to citizens as is practicable.
(e) Each court of appeals may hold special sessions at any place within the United States outside the circuit as the nature of the business may require and upon such notice as the court orders, upon a finding by either the chief judge of the court of appeals (or, if the chief judge is unavailable, the most senior available active judge of the court of appeals) or the judicial council of the circuit that, because of emergency conditions, no location within the circuit is reasonably available where such special sessions could be held. The court may transact any business at a special session outside the circuit which it might transact at a regular session.
(f)
If a court of appeals issues an order exercising its authority under subsection (e), the court—
(1)
through the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, shall—
(A) send notice of such order, including the reasons for the issuance of such order, to the Committee on the Judiciary of the Senate and the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives; and
(B)
not later than 180 days after the expiration of such court order submit a brief report to the Committee on the Judiciary of the Senate and the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives describing the impact of such order, including—
(i) the reasons for the issuance of such order;
(ii) the duration of such order;
(iii) the impact of such order on litigants; and
(iv) the costs to the judiciary resulting from such order; and
(2) shall provide reasonable notice to the United States Marshals Service before the commencement of any special session held pursuant to such order.
(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 872; Oct. 31, 1951, ch. 655, § 36, 65 Stat. 723; Pub. L. 96–452, § 4, Oct. 14, 1980, 94 Stat. 1994; Pub. L. 97–164, title I, § 104, Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 26; Pub. L. 102–572, title V, § 501, Oct. 29, 1992, 106 Stat. 4512; Pub. L. 109–63, § 2(a), Sept. 9, 2005, 119 Stat. 1993.)
§ 49.
Assignment of judges to division to appoint independent counsels
(a) Beginning with the two-year period commencing on the date of the enactment of this section, three judges or justices shall be assigned for each successive two-year period to a division of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to be the division of the court for the purpose of appointing independent counsels. The Clerk of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit shall serve as the clerk of such division of the court and shall provide such services as are needed by such division of the court.
(b) Except as provided under subsection (f) of this section, assignment to such division of the court shall not be a bar to other judicial assignments during the term of such division.
(c) In assigning judges or justices to sit on such division of the court, priority shall be given to senior circuit judges and retired justices.
(d) The Chief Justice of the United States shall designate and assign three circuit court judges or justices, one of whom shall be a judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, to such division of the court. Not more than one judge or justice or senior or retired judge or justice may be named to such division from a particular court.
(e) Any vacancy in such division of the court shall be filled only for the remainder of the two-year period in which such vacancy occurs and in the same manner as initial assignments to such division were made.
(f) Except as otherwise provided in chapter 40 of this title, no member of such division of the court who participated in a function conferred on the division under chapter 40 of this title involving an independent counsel shall be eligible to participate in any judicial proceeding concerning a matter which involves such independent counsel while such independent counsel is serving in that office or which involves the exercise of such independent counsel’s official duties, regardless of whether such independent counsel is still serving in that office.
(Added Pub. L. 95–521, title VI, § 602(a), Oct. 26, 1978, 92 Stat. 1873; amended Pub. L. 97–409, § 2(b)(1), Jan. 3, 1983, 96 Stat. 2039; Pub. L. 99–554, title I, § 144(g)(3), Oct. 27, 1986, 100 Stat. 3097; Pub. L. 100–191, §§ 4, 5(a), Dec. 15, 1987, 101 Stat. 1307.)