Oklahoma has two courts of last resort. The Supreme Court of Oklahoma determines all issues of a civil nature while the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals decides all criminal matters. The Supreme Court consists of nine Justices. Each Justice shall be from a separate district of the State. The terms of office of the Justices of the Supreme Court is six years. To be eligible to hold the office at the time of his election or appointment, each Justice shall have:
- attained the age of thirty years;
- been a qualified elector in the district for at least one year immediately prior to the date of filing or appointment; and
- been a licensed practicing attorney or judge of a court of record, or both, in Oklahoma for five years preceding his election or appointment and shall continue to be a duly licensed attorney while in office.
The Justices choose a Chief Justice and a Vice Chief Justice from among their members. In the event of vacancy of a Justice from a particular district, the Governor appoints a Justice from that district, until the next election for State Officers. The salaries of Judges and Justices shall not be diminished, but may be increased during their respective terms of office.
The original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court extends to a general superintending control over all inferior courts and all agencies, commissions and boards created by law. The Supreme Court has power to issue, hear and determine writs of habeas corpus, mandamus, quo warranto, certiorari, prohibition and such other remedial writs.
The appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court extends to all cases at law and in equity; except to criminal cases over which the Court of Criminal Appeals shall have exclusive appellate jurisdiction. In case there is any conflict as to jurisdiction, the Supreme Court shall determine which court has jurisdiction and such determination shall be final.
A majority of the members of the Supreme Court constitutes a quorum and the concurrence of the quorum is necessary to decide any question. The Supreme Court has the authority to frame rules to determine the jurisdiction, powers, duties and procedures of intermediate appellate courts. When the intermediate appellate courts acquire jurisdiction in any cause and make final disposition of the matter, such disposition shall be final and there shall be no further right of appeal except for issuance of a writ of certiorari ordered by a majority of the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court of Oklahoma is vested with the general administrative authority over the State, including the temporary assignment of any judge to a court. These powers shall be exercised by the Chief Justice. The Supreme Court appoints an administrative director and staff, who assist the Chief Justice in their administrative duties and otherwise gerneally assist the Court. The Supreme Court also appoints a Clerk of the Supreme Court, who performs the duties prescribed by law and rules of the Supreme Court.
Oklahoma Courts Website: http://www.oscn.net/applications/oscn/start.asp