The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals is a Federal court that is located in Richmond, Virginia. It is one of the thirteen district courts of appeal. The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has been granted jurisdiction to hear appeals that originate in the nine districts below:
The District of Maryland,
The Western District of North Carolina,
The Middle District of North Carolina
The Eastern District of North Carolina,
The District of South Carolina,
The Western District of Virginia,
The Eastern District of Virginia,
The Northern District of West Virginia, and
The Southern District of West Virginia.
The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals is based at the Lewis F. Powell, Jr. United States Courthouse in Richmond, Virginia. There are 15 authorized judgeships associated with the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. 13 of these positions are held by active justices, one by a senior judge who continues to hear cases on a part time basis, and two judges who have retired and no longer hear cases.
Until recent years, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has been considered the most conservative of the courts in the Federal Appellate System. Besides being extremely conservative, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals is also the most efficient of the thirteen circuits, taking just seven months to resolve each appeal. The Court is also extremely collegial, with a tradition that calls for the Justices to come down from the bench following each oral argument and greet the lawyers arguing before the Court.