More About the Court of Appeals
Congress established the District of Columbia Court of Appeals as the highest court of the District of Columbia in 1970. The court consists of a chief judge and eight associate judges. The court is assisted by the service of retired judges who have been recommended and approved as senior judges.
The DC Court of Appeals is the equivalent of a state supreme court. As the highest court for the District of Columbia, the Court of Appeals is authorized to review all final orders, judgments and specified interlocutory orders of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. The Court also has jurisdiction to review contested case decisions of administrative agencies, boards, and commissions of the District of Columbia government, as well as to answer questions of law certified by federal and state appellate courts. As authorized by Congress, the Court reviews proposed rules of the Superior Court and promulgates its own rules. Additionally, the Court oversees attorneys who are members of its Bar.
Cases before the court are determined by randomly selected, three-judge divisions, unless a hearing or rehearing before the court sitting en banc, that is, by all 9 judges, is requested and ordered. A hearing or rehearing before the Court sitting en banc may be ordered by a majority of the judges in regular active service, generally only when consideration by the full court is necessary to maintain uniformity of its decisions, or when the case involves a question of exceptional importance.
In the exercise of its inherent jurisdiction over members of the legal profession, the Court established the District of Columbia Bar and has the power to approve the rules regarding attorney discipline. The Court also approves the rules regarding attorney conduct and has established rules governing the admission of members of the District of Columbia Bar and the resolution of complaints concerning the unauthorized practice of law in the District of Columbia.More information on the historic courthouse