Wikipedia:WikiProject United States courts and judges
- updated 2021/06/15 18:38
The judicial Power of the United States, shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behavior, and shall, at stated Times, receive for their Services a Compensation which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in Office.
Some Wikipedians have formed a project to better organize information in articles related to courts and judges in the United States. This includes United States federal courts and United States federal judges, which constitute the third branch of the United States government, coequal with the executive and the legislative. It also includes state court judges, to the extent that these may be notable individuals. This page and its subpages contain their suggestions; it is hoped that this project will help to focus the efforts of other Wikipedians. If you would like to help, please inquire on the talk page and see the to-do list below.
This Wikiproject is aimed at creating stronger coverage of courts, courthouses, and judges in the United States, and a greater quality and consistency among these articles. Key areas of concern include consistency in the type and style of information presented on judges and judicial districts.
Our efforts to present all of this information are greatly assisted by the directories of judges, courts, and courthouses maintained in the database of the Federal Judicial Center ("FJC"; located here), a public domain resource on these areas compiled by the United States government. However, the FJC database is not presented in an encyclopedic style, and does not address many important aspects of the courts and judges profiled therein.
Every one of the 3,200+ United States Article III federal judges has been nominated by the President of the United States and effectively voted into office for life ("during good behavior") by the United States Senate (with the rare exception of rejected recess appointments). Once in office, federal judges routinely decide cases affecting the lives of thousands of people. These individuals are therefore inherently notable. Wikipedia should contain an article on every judge who has been so appointed, including the information set forth by the FJC, but also, to the degree possible, explaining why this person was selected to join the ranks of the federal judiciary, and what impact they had there. If possible, articles should set forth some record of the judicial activities of the person, including notable cases originating before them. A substantial number of cases heard by the United States Supreme Court originate before United States district court judges, and are passed upon by United States court of appeals judges, before being considered by the Supreme Court. To the greatest extent possible, each article should contain a photograph or portrait of the judge.
The United States district courts, along with certain specialty courts, resolve a large number of disputes and have a substantial and important history. Wikipedia now has an article on every such court currently in operation, but these articles vary widely in quality, information presented, and style. Our articles on these districts should have as much uniformity as possible, and each of them should contain a history of the court's establishment and expansion or subdivision, notable cases originating in that court, a table of the judges who have served on that court, and images including the seal of the court, a map of the court's geographic jurisdiction indicating the cities from which the court operates, and pictures of the most important courthouse or courthouses from which the court operates.
Over 600 buildings have served as courthouses housing operations of the United States federal courts. Hundreds of these have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and many others either serve as important geographic landmarks, or have played host to historic trials and other law-related events. Wikipedia is missing articles on most of these buildings (see List of United States federal courthouses, and each of these articles will be best served by having images of the buildings as well as information about the history of their design, construction, and use.