• Very little of the work the United States Supreme Court does is done in public.
• The court's session--known as a term--runs from October to June or July. This is the period during which the court hears cases and renders decisions, also known as opinions.
• There are several steps a case has to go through to be heard by the court.
• The court must first decide whether it wants to hear the case--known as granting cert. In order to grant cert, four of the nine justices must agree to hear the case.
• Then written and oral arguments are scheduled. The written arguments are called briefs. The oral arguments generally last 30 minutes per side and are held before the court.
• Following this, the justices meet in conference to reach a preliminary decision. Then the justices split into a majority and minority. The senior-most justice on the majority, or the...
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