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Overview of the Nevada Court System

Nevada has five different kinds of courts.

The bottom tier of the court system comprises two of these courts: justice courts and municipal courts. Both of these courts handle cases involving violations of traffic and misdemeanor ordinances, but the justice courts have a broader jurisdiction. Justice courts hear small-claims disputes and other civil matters involving amounts under $15,000. The justice courts also handle felony and gross misdemeanor arraignments and preliminary hearings to determine whether a criminal case should be heard in district court.

The district courts, which are the next level up in the court structure, have jurisdiction over all legal disputes. They hear criminal, civil, family, and juvenile cases as well as appeals from the municipal and justice courts.

The next level up is the appellate tier, which includes two courts: The Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals. The Supreme Court is the top court in the system, handling appeals from the district courts. The purpose of the Court of Appeals is to handle cases that are assigned to it by the Supreme Court.

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