Powers and Duties: 6th Circuit Judge
Circuit court judges hear cases at the circuit level, which includes jurisdiction over a wide range of civil and criminal cases.
Circuit court judges are elected to six-year terms in nonpartisan, contested elections. Florida’s 6th Judicial Circuit covers Pinellas and Pasco counties, and includes 45 judges at the circuit level. It’s one of 20 judicial circuits in Florida and 94 circuits in the United States. The judges receive an annual salary of $209,100.
To be eligible to serve as a circuit court judge, a candidate must be an elector of the county in which they which to serve and must also have been admitted to practice law in the state of Florida for the preceding five years.
Circuit courts have general trial jurisdiction over matters that include the following:
- civil disputes involving more than $15,000
- controversies involving the estates of decedents, minors and people adjudicated as incapacitated
- cases related to juveniles
- all criminal felony prosecutions; tax disputes
- disputes over titles and boundaries of real property
- requests for injunctions to prevent individuals or entities from acting in unlawful manners
- family cases such as divorce, child custody, domestic violence, juvenile dependency and visitation
Circuit courts also hear appeals from county court cases, which means they are both the highest trial court and the lowest appellate court in Florida’s judicial system.