With the passage, on November 5, 1974, of the Judicial Reorganization Amendment to the West Virginia Constitution, a new era of judicial administration began for West Virginia. Central to this new judicial article was the unification of the lower state courts under the general supervision of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia. The Amendment mandated the establishment of a magistrate court system, replacing the system of justice of the peace (J.P.) courts used in the Virginias since 1661. This article will examine and evaluate the legislative implementation of the magistrate courts system, discuss differences between the J.P. system and the magistrate system, and offer some suggestions for effective advocacy in magistrate courts.
John C. Purbaugh & Robert A. Burnside Jr.,
Judicial Reform in West Virginia: The Magistrate Court System,
W. Va. L. Rev.
Available at: https://researchrepository.wvu.edu/wvlr/vol79/iss2/7