28 U.S. Code § 171 - Appointment and number of judges; character of court; designation of chief judge

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(a) The President shall appoint, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, sixteen judges who shall constitute a court of record known as the United States Court of Federal Claims. The court is declared to be a court established under article I of the Constitution of the United States.
(b) The President shall designate one of the judges of the Court of Federal Claims who is less than seventy years of age to serve as chief judge. The chief judge may continue to serve as such until he reaches the age of seventy years or until another judge is designated as chief judge by the President. After the designation of another judge to serve as chief judge, the former chief judge may continue to serve as a judge of the court for the balance of the term to which appointed.

Source

(June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat 898; July 28, 1953, ch. 253, § 1,67 Stat. 226; Sept. 3, 1954, ch. 1263, § 39(a),68 Stat. 1240; Pub. L. 89–425, § 1(b),May 11, 1966, 80 Stat. 140; Pub. L. 97–164, title I, § 105(a),Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 27; Pub. L. 102–572, title IX, § 902(a),Oct. 29, 1992, 106 Stat. 4516.)
Historical and Revision Notes

Based on title 28, U.S.C., 1940 ed. § 241 (Mar. 3, 1911, ch. 231, § 136,36 Stat. 1135; Feb. 25, 1919, ch. 29, § 4,40 Stat. 1157; Dec. 13, 1926, ch. 6, § 144 Stat. 919).
This section contains a part of section 241 of title 28, U.S.C., 1940 ed. The remainder of such section, relating to tenure, salaries and oath, is incorporated in sections 173 and 453 of this title.
The term “chief judge” was substituted for “Chief Justice.” (See reviser’s note under section 136 of this title.)
Words “a court of record known as” were added. For similar provision covering other Federal courts, see sections 132, 211, and 251 of this title.
The official status of the Chief Justice of the Court of Claims holding office on the effective date of this act is preserved by section 2 of the bill to enact revised title 28.
Minor changes were made in arrangement and phraseology.
Amendments

1992—Pub. L. 102–572substituted “United States Court of Federal Claims” for “United States Claims Court” in subsec. (a) and “Court of Federal Claims” for “Claims Court” in subsec. (b).
1982—Pub. L. 97–164designated existing provisions as subsec. (a), substituted “sixteen judges who shall constitute a court of record known as the United States Claims Court” for “a chief judge and six associate judges who shall constitute a court of record known as the United States Court of Claims” and “The court is declared to be a court established under article I of the Constitution of the United States” for “Such court is hereby declared to be a court established under article III of the Constitution of the United States” in subsec. (a) as so designated, and added subsec. (b).
1966—Pub. L. 89–425increased the number of associate judges from four to six.
1954—Act Sept. 3, 1954, inserted “; character or court” in section catchline.
1953—Act July 28, 1953, inserted second sentence.
Change of Name

Pub. L. 102–572, title IX, § 902(b),Oct. 29, 1992, 106 Stat. 4516, provided that: “Reference in any other Federal law [meaning any Federal law other than chapters 7, 51, 91, and 165 of this title] or any document to—
“(1) the ‘United States Claims Court’ shall be deemed to refer to the ‘United States Court of Federal Claims’; and
“(2) the ‘Claims Court’ shall be deemed to refer to the ‘Court of Federal Claims’.”
Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

Pub. L. 102–572, title IX, § 911,Oct. 29, 1992, 106 Stat. 4520, provided that: “This title [see Tables for classification] and the amendments made by this title shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act [Oct. 29, 1992].”
Effective Date of 1982 Amendment

Pub. L. 97–164, title IV, § 402,Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 57, provided that: “Unless otherwise specified, the provisions of this Act [see Short Title of 1982 Amendment note set out under section 1 of this title] shall take effect on October 1, 1982.”
Continued Service of Commissioners of Court of Claims as Judges

Pub. L. 97–164, title I, § 167,Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 50, provided that Commissioners of United States Court of Claims serving immediately prior to Oct. 1, 1982, became judges of United States Claims Court [now United States Court of Federal Claims] on such date, with initial terms expiring 15 years after date of employment or on Oct. 1, 1986, whichever occurred earlier, and with salaries equal to salaries of Commissioners of Court of Claims.
Tennessee Valley Authority Legal Representation

Pub. L. 97–164, title I, § 169,Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 51, provided that: “Nothing in this Act [see Short Title of 1982 Amendment note set out under section 1 of this title] affects the authority of the Tennessee Valley Authority under the Tennessee Valley Authority Act of 1933 [16 U.S.C. 831 et seq.] to represent itself by attorneys of its choosing.”
Transition Provisions: Transfer of Pending Cases

Pub. L. 97–164, title IV, § 403,Apr. 2, 1982, 96 Stat. 57, provided for transfer of cases or matters pending on Oct. 1, 1982, before Court of Claims or United States Court of Customs and Patent Appeals to United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, directed that petitions for rehearing, reconsideration, or other changes in decisions of Court of Claims or United States Court of Customs and Patent Appeals rendered prior to such date be determined by United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, directed that matters pending before Commissioners of United States Court of Claims on such date be determined by United States Claims Court [now United States Court of Federal Claims], and directed that any case in which notice of appeal had been filed in district court of United States prior to such date would be decided by court of appeals to which the appeal was taken.
Congressional Statement Regarding Appointment of Judges

For Congressional suggestion that the President select nominees for judgeships on the Claims Court [now Court of Federal Claims] and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit from a broad range of qualified individuals, see section 168 ofPub. L. 97–164, set out as a note under section 44 of this title.

 

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