Select a State:

State of Georgia

History of Reform Efforts: Georgia

Formal Changes Since Inception

1777
Judges appointed by the assembly for an indefinite term.

1789
Selection method unclear. Superior court judges selected for three-year terms.

1798
Superior court judges elected by the general assembly to three-year terms; inferior court judges elected for life.

1812
Inferior court judges elected by the people to four-year terms.

1835
Constitutional amendment authorized creation of supreme court, with judges elected by the legislature to terms prescribed by law. Superior court judges elected by the people to four-year terms.

1845
Supreme court created by the legislature.

1865
Supreme court judges elected by the general assembly to terms of no less than six years.

1868
Supreme court justices elected by the people to twelve-year terms; superior court judges elected to eight-year terms.

1877
Supreme court justices elected by the general assembly to six-year terms; superior court judges elected to four-year terms.

1896
Supreme court justices elected by the people.

1898
Superior court judges elected by the people.

1906
Court of appeals established by constitutional amendment. Judges elected by the people to six-year terms.

1972
Governor Carter became the first Georgia governor to establish a judicial nominating commission by executive order to assist in filling interim vacancies on the courts.

1983
Judicial elections made nonpartisan under the 1983 constitution.

2000
Voters approved a constitutional amendment increasing from five to seven years the time for which judges of the state courts must have been admitted to practice law.