A magistrate is a type of judge that oversees specific jurisdictions and rules in civil trials which are usually considered to be “small claims” or misdemeanor issues. Magistrates are not employed in all of the 50 states but in the states that do utilize them they are appointed to their positions by a United States district court judge. According to the website there is competition to be appointed as a magistrate and it is therefore not a guaranteed profession for all those who seek it. Magistrates have busy schedules and must hear cases and trials on their daily docket. They must be extremely knowledgeable about the law be able to interpret and enforce court rules and be willing to uphold laws in every situation. Magistrates can oversee small claims court night court traffic court and felony pre-trial hearings and arraignments. In order to become a magistrate a bachelor’s degree is required and a law degree is preferred. While it is not required to have previous experience as a practicing attorney it is usually helpful to have this type of practical experience prior to being appointed to the position. Magistrates must have extremely high moral character be ethical be leaders in the courtroom and have excellent communication skills. The website reports that the salary potential for magistrates ranges from $32300 to $162000 per year.

Education Required: Bachelor's Degree
Avg Salary: $97250
High Salary: $162200
Low Salary: $32300
Tasks: Hears small claims cases.
Upholds laws.
Sets bail.
Issues arrest warrants.
Also Called: Judge
Judicial Officer
Officer of the State
Justice of the Peace
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