Superior Court Jurisdiction

The Superior Court is Georgia’s general jurisdiction trial court that handles both civil and criminal law actions. Superior Court Judges preside over cases involving felonies, divorces, child custody, child support, juvenile delinquency, DFACS and equity issues. In addition, the court handles various other civil disputes. The Superior Court also has concurrent jurisdiction with local limited jurisdiction trial courts such as the Magistrate Court (civil disputes less than $15,001), the Probate Court, and the State Court (misdemeanors and lawsuits not involving equity disputes).

Superior Courts are organized into 10 Judicial Districts, comprising 49 judicial circuits and 205 judges. Each county has its own Superior Court, although a judge may serve in more than one county. Each circuit has a Chief Superior Court judge and a number of other judges as sanctioned by the General Assembly. The chief judge handles the administrative tasks for each circuit.

The Ogeechee Circuit is comprised of Bulloch, Effingham, Jenkins and Screven counties. It has three judges, William E. Woodrum, Jr., John R. Turner and F. Gates Peed. Judge Turner is retiring at the end of his term ending December, 2016. The election for Judge Turner’s successor is May 24, 2016.

Superior Court judges are constitutional officers elected to four-year terms in circuit-wide nonpartisan elections. To qualify as a Superior Court judge, a candidate must be at least 30 years old, a citizen of Georgia for at least three years, and have practiced law for at least seven years. Citizens from all four counties in the Ogeechee Circuit vote on May 24, 2016 to elect their Superior Court Judges.

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