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State of Colorado

Methods of Judicial Selection: Colorado

Selection of Judges

Number of Judgeships
Supreme Court: 7
Court of Appeals: 22
District Court: 164
Number of Districts/Circuits
Supreme Court: 1
Court of Appeals: 1
District Court: 22
Geographic Basis for Selection
Supreme Court: statewide
Court of Appeals: statewide
District Court: county
Method of Selection (full term)
Supreme Court: gubernatorial appointment from nominating commission
Court of Appeals: gubernatorial appointment from nominating commission
District Court: gubernatorial appointment from nominating commission
Length of Term
Supreme Court: at least 2 yrs
Court of Appeals: at least 2 yrs
District Court: at least 2 yrs
Method of Retention
Supreme Court: retention election
Court of Appeals: retention election
District Court: retention election
Length of Subsequent Terms
Supreme Court: 10 yrs
Court of Appeals: 8 yrs
District Court: 6 yrs
Method of Filling Interim Vacancies
Supreme Court: gubernatorial appointment from nominating commission
Court of Appeals: gubernatorial appointment form nominating commission
District Court: gubernatorial appointment from nominating commission
When Interim Judges Stand for Election/Appointment
Supreme Court: next general election after 2 yrs in office
Court of Appeals: next general election after 2 yrs in office
District Court: next general election after 2 yrs in office
Selection of Chief Judge/Justice
Supreme Court: peer vote
Court of Appeals: chief justice appoints
District Court: chief justice appoints
Term of Office for Chief Judge/Justice
Supreme Court: indefinite
Court of Appeals: indefinite
District Court: indefinite
Qualifications
Supreme Court: qualified elector in state; licensed to practice law in state 5 yrs; mandatory retirement age of 72
Court of Appeals: qualified elector in state; licensed to practice law in state 5 yrs. mandatory retirement age of 72
District Court: qualified elector in district; licensed to practice law in state 5 yrs; mandatory retirment age of 72
Selection and retention methods and term lengths are prescribed by Article VI of the Colorado Constitution.