Chapter 7A.

Judicial Department.

Subchapter I. GeneRal Court of Justice.

Article 1.

Judicial Power and Organization.

§ 7A-1.  Short title.

This Chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Judicial Department Act of 1965." (1965, c. 310, s. 1.)


§ 7A-2.  Purpose of Chapter.

This Chapter is intended to implement Article IV of the Constitution of North Carolina and promote the just and prompt disposition of litigation by:

(1)        Providing a new chapter in the General Statutes into which, at a time not later than January 1, 1971, when the General Court of Justice is fully operational in all counties of the State, all statutes concerning the organization, jurisdiction and administration of each division of the General Court of Justice may be placed;

(2)        Amending certain laws with respect to the superior court division to conform them to the laws set forth in this Chapter, to the end that each trial division may be a harmonious part of the General Court of Justice;

(3)        Creating the district court division of the General Court of Justice, and the Administrative Office of the Courts;

(4)        Establishing in accordance with a fixed schedule the various  district courts of the district court division;

(5)        Providing for the organization, jurisdiction and procedures necessary for the operation of the district court division;

(6)        Providing for the financial support of the judicial department, and for uniform costs and fees in the trial divisions of the General Court of Justice;

(7)        Providing for an orderly transition from the present system of courts to a uniform system completely operational in all counties of the State not later than January 1, 1971;

(8)        Repealing certain laws inconsistent with the foregoing purposes; and

(9)        Effectuating other purposes incidental and supplemental to the foregoing enumerated purposes. (1965, c. 310, s. 1.)


§ 7A-3.  Judicial power; transition provisions.

Except for the judicial power vested in the court for the trial of impeachments, and except for such judicial power as may from time to time be vested by the General Assembly in administrative agencies, the judicial power of the State is vested exclusively in the General Court of Justice. Provided, that all existing courts of the State inferior to the superior courts, including justice of the peace courts and mayor's courts, shall continue to exist and to exercise the judicial powers vested in them by law until specifically abolished by law, or until the establishment within the county of their situs of a district court, or until January 1, 1971, whichever event shall first occur. Judgments of inferior courts which cease to exist under the provisions of this section continue in force and effect as though the issuing court continued to exist, and the General Court of Justice is hereby vested with jurisdiction to enforce such judgments. (1965, c. 310, s. 1.)


§ 7A-4.  Composition and organization.

The General Court of Justice constitutes a unified judicial system for purposes of jurisdiction, operation and administration, and consists of an appellate division, a superior court division, and a district court division. (1965, c. 310, s. 1.)