Trials and Appeals.

Trial by jury in civil trials, unlike the case in criminal trials, has not been deemed essential to due process, and the Fourteenth Amendment has not been held to restrain the states in retaining or abolishing civil juries.1067 Thus, abolition of juries in proceedings to enforce liens,1068 mandamus1069 and quo warranto1070 actions, and in eminent domain1071 and equity1072 proceedings has been approved. states are also free to adopt innovations respecting selection and number of jurors. Verdicts rendered by ten out of twelve jurors may be substituted for the requirement of unanimity,1073 and petit juries containing eight rather than the conventional number of twelve members may be established.1074

If a full and fair trial on the merits is provided, due process does not require a state to provide appellate review.1075 But if an appeal is afforded, the state must not so structure it as to arbitrarily deny to some persons the right or privilege available to others.1076

Footnotes

1067
Walker v. Sauvinet, 92 U.S. 90 (1876); New York Central R.R. v. White, 243 U.S. 188, 208 (1917). [Back to text]
1068
Marvin v. Trout, 199 U.S. 212, 226 (1905). [Back to text]
1069
In re Delgado, 140 U.S. 586, 588 (1891). [Back to text]
1070
Wilson v. North Carolina, 169 U.S. 586 (1898); Foster v. Kansas, 112 U.S. 201, 206 (1884). [Back to text]
1071
Long Island Water Supply Co. v. Brooklyn, 166 U.S. 685, 694 (1897). [Back to text]
1072
Montana Co. v. St. Louis M. & M. Co., 152 U.S. 160, 171 (1894). [Back to text]
1073
See Jordan v. Massachusetts, 225 U.S. 167, 176 (1912). [Back to text]
1074
See Maxwell v. Dow, 176 U.S. 581, 602 (1900). [Back to text]
1075
Lindsey v. Normet, 405 U.S. 56, 77 (1972) (citing cases). [Back to text]
1076
405 U.S. at 74–79 (conditioning appeal in eviction action upon tenant posting bond, with two sureties, in twice the amount of rent expected to accrue pending appeal, is invalid when no similar provision is applied to other cases). Cf. Bankers Life & Casualty Co. v. Crenshaw, 486 U.S. 71 (1988) (assessment of 15% penalty on party who unsuccessfully appeals from money judgment meets rational basis test under equal protection challenge, since it applies to plaintiffs and defendants alike and does not single out one class of appellants). [Back to text]